Tuesday.  I’ve been working on the world book this week, which has me thinking about Rachel.  I also finished the page proofs for PALE DEMON, which means I’ll be going over the next book soon, currently sitting at rough draft, fermenting the last 12 months.  I’ve got a pivotal decision to make, and I didn’t get to sleep much last night, trying to second-guess myself as to what I should do.  Let me rephrase that.  Very little sleep.

I’m just going to have to read it, I think, and try to decide from there.

Should he stay or should he go.  (Why am I hearing music?) -grin-  And no, I’m not talking about Pierce, or Nick, or any character that you’ve all met already.  Rachel has been reluctant to be open with her heart since Kisten, and I’ve got two new guys in this next one, (after PALE DEMON) Neither was introduced for her benefit, but they both have promise, now that she and I have had time to get to know them and I can see how they both might fit into future story lines.  One doesn’t see her as a “girl”, and though I like that, I’m wondering if he should stay or leave and let the other guy do what he’s doing right now.  Ergggg.  I hate having too many characters, but this time, I think he needs to stay.  In my effort to maintain a low character list, I might be shortchanging myself.

Pumpkins are pumpkining.  Still no female flowers.  Just male.  But they look nice.  And as you can see, I weeded.  😉

I’ve got about six ideas battling it out in my head for short stories I want to write and don’t have the time for.

Music has gone from Spa, to Chill, sort of an electronic dance genre with very few lyrics.

And I still don’t have any birds at the feeder.  They are liking my birdbath, though.

Something is getting ready to shift . . . again.


Filed under Drama Box

48 responses to “mishmash

  1. Hello Mrs. Harrison,
    I was wondering about your character list the other day and whether you were purposefully keeping it to a manageble amount. I was also wondering if you find that you have a ‘maximum amount’ of characters that you can deal with in a scene? Like – you can write for five people in the same room, but when they get a little bit more you start to feel a bit overwhealmed by dialogue?
    Probably not, lol, you’re super author. And! I have a solution for you, ready?
    Have both the guys go and let Ivy take Rachel into the HEA…. 😉
    That’s my two cents. 😉
    Hope you have a wonderful day ma’am, good luck and I hope you got enough sleep!

    • -grin- I like your solution, Alyssa. As it happens, I do have a maxim that I like to keep under. I’ve been watching it grow as my writing skills do. Two is ideal, and for a while, three was the max I liked. (You can see it in the Truth books, which is very spare on the characters until the last book, where I have crowds and big meetings) In a fight scene, I can now handle about five people comfortably. In the last Madison book, I think I have six or so in the last few chapters, and it made me uncomfortable. There was one too many people in there, but I had my reasons. I still like three people in a scene, and if I can weed out a character from a book by giving his or her “jobs” to a character already established, I’ll do it in a heartbeat.

  2. Thersa

    Hi Ms. Harrison i’m sure that what ever you pick for your next books it will be great and those pumpkin flowers are pretty (i haven’t weeded in forever-grin-). The birds have visited my bird feeder and my cats always try to scare them away. Don’t ya hate it when songs get stuck in your head all day? And for your sleep problems try an extra pillow it always works for me.
    From, Theresa

    • Hi Thersa. I slept good last night, thanks. And yes! I know what you mean about the song stuck in your head. This weekend, it was Mad World. Right now, it’s I Get Along Without You Very Well. (It’s kind of rainy, and that brings out the Jazz in me.)

  3. bredane

    Hi Kim,

    I haven’t logged on for a while, imagine my surprise to find out you are back in Michigan! I too am a native Michigander and have recently returned also. I used to log on a brenda from no wheresville Florida as I lived in the boondocks in Florida. I must say now that I have returned to Michigan I too have tried my hand at gardening, I had no luck with the sand and heat in Florida.

    I am trying and I stress “trying” to grow pumpkins, I have never grown them before so I was intrigued with your comment about no female flowers how the heck do you determine that? No skirt to check, lol. I am also trying my hand at growing butternut squash have you tried to grow these? they are running all over my garden and are trying to push out my pumpkins. I have heard that the flower of these squash are tasty to eat but I don’t know about that they don’t look very tasty to me.

    Good to know you are back in Michigan, I don’t know about you, I am in the Ann Arbor area and am worrying about facing a Michigan winter as I have not seen one of those in over a decade, do I hear snow blowers in our futures? lol. Keep up the great writing and please give Ivy a steady boyfriend I would love to see how Rachel would react to that.

    • Hi Bredane. Mmmm. I’m in the A2 area as well. -grin- We can snowblow our drives together in spirit.

      It’s really easy to tell the difference between pumpkin flowers. The male flowers are on the end of tall stems, and the females are carried lower and have little pumpkinlike ovules (?) at the base of the flower. So far, I’ve only gotten male flowers as the plant continues to grow. I don’t think it can support a fruit yet.

      A steady boyfriend. What a great idea . . .

  4. XienMe

    The characters will work themselves. I think I am finding I am in the minority for Ivy and Rachel to not get together. She is such an independent person and I think they would get to be too much of a crutch for each other.

    We discovered two big green pumpkins in our patch today. Our first time growing pumpkins. We started blue ones too but they didn’t take when we transplanted them.

    Nice Garden. We grow primarily tomatos ourselves. Crazy heirloom tomatos.

  5. Julia Uz

    Growing my cukes and squash up this year on trellis or trellisi or trellises I don’t know which. 🙂

    Kim, do you use your gardening time to let your mind percolate on what you’re writing?

    • Hi Julia. Sometimes I think about the books, but mostly it’s just a complete and utter mental meltdown, and there is nothing in the world but me and the dirt. Honestly, I get oblivious to everything.

  6. Hmm well I was actually going to ask if you take time making choices with characters and the storyline while your writing or if you just have most of it planned out in your head already. It looks like this post answered that question for me *laughs*

    I can’t offer too much insight on the guys since I haven’t caught up with the most recent books yet. I just finished The Outlaw Demon Wails which was very good like all the others but Rachel’s sudden change of mind about sharing blood seemed rather…irrational? Not sure how to word it.

    So far in the books I think that Rachel’s relationship with Ivy has been the most loving and important. I really wouldn’t be surprised if she ended up in a triangle with Ivy and another male character. Kind of like a situation like her mother. After all, history does repeat itself =P

    I also always liked Nick, probably because we share a name haha

    • Also great job on your garden =)

    • Hi Nick. As much as I complain about Nick, I kind of like him, too.

      Actually, I do plan the books out in great depth, just not until I’m ready to write them. There’s a lot of mental gymnastics that I go through before I pick up my pencil and handwrite out the outline. And my outline ALWAYS changes.

  7. Madison

    I have to agree with Indy, ditch the boys and let Ivy have her way!!! 😉

  8. Rebecca

    All your pumpkin plant pictures as of late are making me want to try to grow them next year. Is the weather around here really just *THAT* perfect for vine-y type plants? Reading your updates makes me realize I’m woefully behind on the series and desperately need to catch up!

  9. becca

    oh kim,to be a fly on your office wall!!;-) or a telepath!!
    any possible ARC give-a-ways this time?pleeeeeeeeaaaaaasssssseee,some sort of competition for you devoted(stalkerish)fans on here.
    any ideas yet on the freebies this release?i still get folks asking me about my ‘key’.
    can you give hints on colours for the cover???
    did you ever get the freesia bulbs to flower and those other seeds i sent to do anything yet?
    hugs to all from the uk

    • Hi Becca. If you were a fly on my wall, you’d be hanging out with my mom. -laugh- Freebies . . . I know what they are. I just haven’t had the time to make them up. Scary. It’s getting close.

      The cover has been leaked, so if you hunt for it, you’ll find it. I’m not posting it yet, preferring to make ugly faces at those who leak the cover, then have the balls to come ask me to be on their blog. (I’m making a list. Checking it twice. Gonna keep track of who’s naughty and nice.)

      The Freesia never grew! I think SC was too hot for them. ;-( I think the squirrels ate everything else.

  10. Chelikins

    So Peirce will not be the one. I know you have people that like him and people that don’t. I just hope he doesn’t hurt Rachel. I hope she realizes what they have/had and breaks it on her own. But you are the storyteller so I will wait for your capable hands to take me down the road of enlightenment!! Two guys.. what is a girl to do.. flip a coin? hehe

    Anyways.. thank you for the teaser.. now I have to wait a year and half for this to come to frutation in my hands! 😉 lol

    Thanks for everything! You rock

    • Hi Chelikins. I liked Pierce, but the chemistry isn’t there, and after this last book . . . well. . . I’m not counting him out, but it’s just not working. He might surprise me, though.

  11. Jenn

    Hi Kim! My Cucumbers are taking over my garden!!!!

    Personally I think having both the male characters in the books is a good idea. I think that Rachel needs someone who doesn’t see her has a woman for her personal growth. Especially if she is kind of intersted in him. *what isn’t that he doesn’t like about me/what do I need to change about myself* not for the guy but just using him to help her grow up. Although Rachel has been reluctant to open her heart, she seems to me to think she has (at least to some degree) for Pierce.

    I have to agree with Tony, I think she needs to sort some things out above the neck before she can really do any more thinking with her heart.

    And yes Marsha, I agree that I don’t think I’ll get the ending to the series that I really want, but I know that what we want may not be the best thing for either of them (at least the way they are going right now).

  12. Dot

    My husband and I want to know… how do you tell a female flower from a male?

    • Hi Dot. Good question. It’s really easy with pumpkins with practice. The male flowers are on the end of tall stems, and the females are carried lower and have little pumpkinlike ovules (?) at the base of the flower. So far, I’ve only gotten male flowers as the plant continues to grow. I don’t think it can support a fruit yet. I’d be willing to bet it’s the same with most squash, too.

  13. Antonio

    Hmm…it seems a little dishonest to me that Rachel mourns Kisten as “the ONE” after death when she knew he wasn’t the one when he was alive. She always held herself a bit apart from him and his life, attracted to the danger, but not willing to share her aura or respecting his natural submissive nature. She loved him, but knew there wasn’t a future. She also never really fully took responsibility for arresting, rather than letting Quen kill Piscarry. This pattern of choosing her principles over doing the hard, right thing, has caused her friends a lot of misery, and cost Kisten his life.

    I don’t know. I haven’t read Bk#9/10 of course, and I love Rachel’s character, but it seems to me she needs to do a little more work “above the neck” before she “opens her heart” to anyone. She doesn’t have the luxury of pretending not to be powerful anymore. And she’s not going to be any good for anyone until she does in my opinion. 😎

    • I like your perspective on this Antonio, but I’m a bit confused. You had me right up until: “This pattern of choosing her principles over doing the hard, right thing.” By definition, isn’t “choosing principles” the same as doing the “right” thing? It seems to me that a person’s view of what is “right” and what is “wrong” is largely governed by their principles and values. Granted we may see what she is doing as the “wrong” thing or “taking the easy way out,” but that is because our perceptions are colored by our values and principles.

    • Hi Antonio. Quen didn’t kill Piscary. Skimmer did. 😉

      Personally, I think Rachel has a good handle on what’s going on in her head. She’s been making some very good decisions lately.

  14. Judi in NJ

    Pretty hostsas and cool pumpkin plants – how can you tell that those are male flowers? Gosh, you know sooooo much about so many different things. After reading your copy edit post re: Pale Demon I started to get that familiar butterfly feeling that comes from getting excited that a release is coming. Yeah – we’re 6 mos out, but it’s just a tickly butterfly feeling for now. 🙂 And Rachel kickin’ butt at Harvard??? LOVE it! Woot! Thanks for sharing with us. Enjoy. and a “S’up?!” to “G”.

    • Hi Judi. Thanks. Male flowers are held higher up on tall stems, and don’t have a little fruit at the base of the flower like females do. The stuff you can learn from books, eh? =laugh- I hope you like PALE DEMON. It’s got a different feel to it.

  15. mudepoz

    Back to the other page 🙂 Volunteer and Rogue are both correct horticultural terms 🙂
    female lowers have pistils and a tiny mini fruit at the end, males only have stigmas.

    How many books does it take to develop a possible love interest? Kisten changed so much over the books, from a scary shallow bad boy, to a deeper bad boy but still put his need to be scion ahead of everything else, to someone with a deep enough love to give up both his lives. (OK, my interpretation, and it has been a bit since I’ve read from the beginning.

    • Hi Mud. How many books does it take to develop a love interest. In romance, one. For me, I like three, but my background is SF and Fantasy, and that’s the pacing I’m most comfortable with. I really liked Kisten. He was a character that helped me grow as a writer.

  16. Indy

    Gee just through both guys out and stick with Ivy. ;)~Indy

  17. Maybe your characters are telling you they are not ready to leave the Hollows and you should consider a couple more books? *sigh* It was worth a try. I know you will work out a great ending for us, even if it isn’t the one I would love to see.

  18. I absolutely adore coming here and reading your thought processes. It is so easy to put authors on this huge pedestal and think these impressive works they come up with spring out of nowhere and are perfect on the first try. It’s nice to remember we’re *all* human here and all have our own processes to get to where we need to be.

    Thank you so much for sharing with us.

    • OMGosh, Greg. Sometimes the only difference between published and unpublished is that the published author sits at his or her desk until her knees cramp up and her fingers hurt-every single day-even when they don’t feel like it.–and the unpublished gives up and goes and turns on the TV.

      It is a hard, exhausting job. That’s why I knock myself out into exhaustion in the garden on the weekends.

  19. suzannelazear

    Okay, dumb question, how can you tell the difference between male and female pumpkin flowers? I want to make sure the tot gets some pumpkins after the whole strawberry incident, lol.

    Good luck, I *hate* those sorts of decisions and I’m dealing with that right now. Not fun. Which character does Rachel want, lol? Sometimes I find that letting the characters decide is easiest–except when writing YA, then my characters seem to want all the wrong things (much like real teens, lol)

    I hope it all works out quickly so you can take a nap.

    Have a great day.


    • Chelikins

      LOL! Suzanne.. I like what you said about your YA charaters.. funny! 😉 I hope everything is coming along for you!!

    • Hi Suzanne. It’s really easy. The male flowers are on the end of tall stems, and the females are carried lower and have little pumpkinlike ovules (?) at the base of the flower. And it’s not a dumb question. If you aren’t trying to hand pollinate, why would you ever want to know? -grin-

  20. Vampyre

    Howdy ma’am,

    Sounds like you’re in a quandry with your characters. I’m no expert on character development but I have seen some interesting things happen over the years to characters over the years.

    An example is “Jonathen” from Buffy:TVS. He started on the show as just an extra in the backgrounf with no lines to become a pivitol character by the end of the series. Once let loose, it can be difficult to see just how one character wil impact your world.

    The birds will start hitting the feeder later on I guess. Right now they still have plenty of natural food sources left. Autumn will be there soon, and they will come. It wont be long untll they are headed here.

    Oh, I finiished “Skinwalker” by Faith Hunter(I like her name) and I really liked it. Now I have another series of books to read. 🙂

    Keep up the good work. You’ll figure out what to do with your excess characters. You always do. Just have fun and try not to get stressed. 🙂 Looking forward to “PALE DEMON”, not to be confused with “PAIL DEMON”, that’s an entirly different story.


    • mudepoz

      I really love the Jane Yellowrock series. The only issue? There are only two so far. However, on Faith’s website, she has some nice shorts that give more backstory, as well as a piece in an anthology. One she just finished was about how the “Joe” (Rick) got his ink. http://www.faithhunter.net/wp/

      She also has the Rogue Mage series. (My book review of the day. I am currently, completely by accident, listening to a romance, but have Bitten by Kelley Armstrong in hardback I think I actually enjoy her YA more, but that was the first thing I read of hers. (I picked it up at a Madison signing)

    • Hi Vampy.
      Yep. Kisten was supposed to walk on, walk off. And he decided to stay for a while. sigh.

  21. Awe, I hope you get the decision made.

    I totally relate to Rachel not being open with her heart after Kisten though. Hell, no one died but my relationship ended and it made me such a mess (as you know) that I’m only just getting back to something like myself. I have a new girlfriend to thank for that but I know I’m still grieving. Leanne (my girlfriend) adores me and loves me so deeply and I love her but constantly feel guilty that I am nowhere near as open with my heart as I used to be. I guess it’s just that lesson that people say everyone learns when they get their heart broken. I’ve gone all cynical but hopefully, given time, that’ll pass.
    So, yeah.. My point. I relate to Ms Morgan. lol

    Also, hearing you talk about you and Rachel getting to know the guys and seeing how they fit into the future and having too many characters etc definitely makes me miss wirting for fun. I haven’t done in it so so long but I do miss that feeling when the plot bunnies and characters just take over and you have to work out how to run with it.

    Hope you and Guy are well,

    • Hi Jemma. It will all work out in the end. I’m just going to relax and keep him. I like his character.

      I’m so glad you’re moving forward. That’s good. All things take time.