I’m thrilled to be here on Carina Press to celebrate the release of Thrown to the Wolves!
This is the third in the Big Bad Wolf series. Third! I keep needing to pull up the ebooks and remind myself, “Oh hey, I did that!” This whole process has gone by in a blur and I can’t believe my debut, The Wolf at the Door, came out over a year ago. The truth is every book still feels like the first. Exciting and alarming and completely fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants. Can you still call yourself a debut author two years in? Just asking for a friend…
It feels a little outrageous to be offering any sort of advice when I’m still so green. But I know lots of readers and writers alike read this blog so I wanted to share a bit of my writing process and how this series came to be. Mainly that it didn’t look like a formal, organized process at all and that turned out okay.
I didn’t set out to write a part-shifter, part-mystery, part-suspense romance (What a mouthful!). I was actually in the middle of working on a completely different book but had these characters and snippets of scenes that would not leave me alone. I thought, let me just write this down “real quick” to return to later and then I can focus on my first project—a plot-bunny exorcism, if you will. Three full books later, I haven’t gotten back to that original story and I’m still jotting down notes on one or two more potential adventures for my grumpy, reluctant agent and his werewolf partner, Cooper and Park.
Even in the midst of writing the series, I jumped around quite a bit. For example, when drafting the first book I had a whole conversation between Cooper and his father that I just had to write down even though his father wasn’t even an on-page character! I kept kicking myself for “wasting time” because I knew there was no feasible way of fitting it into the story. It was taking way longer to finish the manuscript than I’d hoped and I was anxious to submit to Carina and find out if these characters even stood a chance of being read at all. But in the end, by giving in and writing what I wanted to not what I was supposed to, I figured out a lot of helpful stuff about Cooper’s character. It also made me realize I needed to focus the second book, The Wolf at Bay, on his family. That same scene turned out to be one of the main emotional beats of the story.
I try to remind myself of that whenever I hit a block or get frustrated and overwhelmed by my own lack of focus. There can be a lot of guilt at the end of the day if the word count on your manuscript isn’t higher than the day before. But it’s okay to just write what feels most exciting in that moment, because it might end up being exactly what you needed to figure out all along.
What’s next for me? I’m taking a break after Thrown to the Wolves to write a new paranormal mystery that’s been haunting me. It’s been strange and exciting and alarming (so business as usual over here) to switch gears and start all over with a brand-new couple. I have so much to learn about them! But let me tell you, I’ve got a really great scene about two-thirds in that’s really helping me write Chapter One.
In the meantime, I send out big support vibes to everyone figuring out their own process, or non-process as it may be, and I’m so grateful to the readers who have helped me become one of my top three childhood dreams, a writer! Now if someone can just work on kicking off my career as an intrepid kid detective we’ll be two for three.
Thank you for reading and good luck to all!
About Thrown to the Wolves:
Agent Cooper Dayton is going to meet his boyfriend’s werewolf family. Unarmed. On their turf.
And he’s bringing his cat.
When Agent Cooper Dayton agreed to attend the funeral for Oliver Park’s grandfather, he didn’t know what he was getting into. Turns out, the deceased was the alpha of the most powerful werewolf pack on the eastern seaboard. And his death is highly suspicious. Regardless, Cooper is determined to love and support Park the way Park has been there for him.
But Park left him woefully unprepared for the wolf pack politics and etiquette. Rival packs? A seating order at the dinner table? A mysterious figure named the Shepherd? The worst is that Park didn’t tell his family one key thing about Cooper. Cooper feels two steps behind, and reticent Park is no help.
There are plenty of pack members eager to open up about Park and why Cooper is wrong for him. Their stories make Cooper wonder if he’s holding Park back. But there’s no time to get into it…as lethal tranquilizer darts start to fly, Cooper needs to solve the mystery of the alpha’s death and fight for the man he loves—all before someone else dies.