When writing by the seat of your pants needs a seatbelt…

I admit it, I write when I’m inspired. When the house is quiet, the kids aren’t at my feet, the dogs are fed and the cats are napping. This means I’m not writing nearly as much as I could. Definitely not as much as I should. I try to fix this by writing later in the afternoon, or after dinner, but the house is so crazy that it makes my brain want to melt. Creativity doesn’t easily find its way through when I’m distracted or tired or pissed. So my style of writing as much as I can when I find the time is not working. I need to write when I make the time.


Sounds straightforward, right? It’s not…not for me. I loathe the word ‘schedule’ almost as much as the word ‘organized’ but the time has come to make this change. To be the person that works a 9-5 (times adjustable) with a calendar to keep track of work days and lists to keep track of my To-Do’s. Ugh. You know those people that write everything down, never forget calls, appointments or special dates like birthdays and anniversaries? I’m not that person. Maybe you are. If so, I’m totally jealous. Writing for me is a way to tame my inner (and outer…I mean, I have a teenager, people) chaos. I quiet the voices by giving them a platform to tell their story, and I know a lot of other writers do this as well. It’s part of the ‘process’ for many, but it’s no longer productive for ME. I feel as if I’ve been flying down the writing highway untethered and unsecured and hoping for the best, but it’s time to crank that down a notch and secure myself in. I need a seatbelt for this road, at least for now.

Today’s ‘work’ hours began 7 minutes ago, when I started writing this blog, because this is part of work, too. And then there’s a webinar to watch, and then there’s writing. I’ll end my work day with a brief stint visiting my social media pages, and come 5pm, I’ll take a break and make dinner and hang out with my kids and do some chores because life doesn’t stop because I want it to.


I’d love to hear tips from those of you who were born with natural organization skills. Drop a comment below and I may try out your methods! 

Here’s to a super productive work day for all of us! *clinks coffee mug* Cheers!

– Trish 🙂


Summer Break is Over…Now Where is That Damn To-Do List?

Summer Break 2017 is officially over in my house. The kids are in a new school district, with a new schedule, and finger’s crossed, this is going to be a good thing for us all. Other than the extra driving and time spent packing nutritionally sufficient school lunches that aren’t full of bribery items like Oreo cookies, my days are lighter.

This means, in theory, that more work time will be available. Of course, I didn’t sit down at the computer until 11am – 2.5 hours after dropping the last kid at school. Why? Because the house is empty, so I attacked the clutter before it could attack me first (can’t tell y’all how many times a day I trip over a random shoe, slip on someone’s discarded sock, or jump at the sight of a dog fur created dust bunny, thinking it’s an alien creature out for my toes), and then I started laundry (a chore that only seems to grow, not shrink in size), and eventually, food will be involved. Yeah, I’m kinda already tired, and it’s only noon now. Shiz.

I know I need to make a valid, organized, bomb-ass To-Do list to get my work stuff back on track, but not knowing exactly where to start, I went to my calendar first to see what’s up. Thankfully, this reminded me that a big promotion is going on tomorrow for one of my free books (Please grab Dying to Forget – it’s totally free – if you like YA that isn’t full of kissy-kissy stuff. I mean, there’s some of that in the series, but this book dives deep into the dark interwebs of the suicidal mind. Not for the faint of heart, but meant to give the reader hope. Did I say it’s totally free?? Okay, enough plugging, let’s move on…). I was also reminded of all the other stuff I’ve been ignoring, like emails, and the not-so-fun computer work of finding old files, updating them, uploading them, etc…

You get it – there’s always something to do. But today? The list must start. So, to keep myself accountable, I’m writing this blog post as a public way of telling myself that this To-Do list thing needs to become an actual thing. And now, I can scratch off the top item on the list – dusting the webs off the blog. You were a part of my first thing TO DO. Yay!

For me, my To-Do list, let’s just call it the TDL for short, will have to start as a daily thing, built up to a long-term goal type of thing. Creating lists aren’t on my list of strengths. Does anyone else organize their life in a productive way? I’d love to hear your tips for doing this in a timely manner, on something more than scratch paper or sticky notes. Though I’ll never stop using my stickies, sorry, not sorry. Also, I’m not a huge TDL planner book type of person, though I find them gorgeous. In fact, the first thing that would happen, is I’d probably lose the planner. But I haven’t lost my phone yet. Or my computer. I’m open for app recommendations, and the like. Whatever keeps this boat floating for the rest of the year, so that readers get more words. Thanks for the help. 😉

Now, I’ll go back to wandering around my semi-empty, quasi-quiet home (we have three dogs, two cats and a fish…it’s never really boring and silent here), looking for something to do.

HALO Warzone, anyone? 😛

Channel your rage onto the page

Every writer has hit the emotional bottom “IRL” before, whether it’s the day after a break up, a death, a scandal, a failure, or a presidential election. We may live in a world of make-believe most of the time, but us writers are people to. We hurt, we cry, we laugh, we love. And we do all of these things while attempting to balance along that precarious edge that is fiction writing (or non-fiction, don’t want to leave y’all out).

So, how do we write when we can barely function in life, due to its ups and downs and constant challenges? We write through it, that’s what we do. We channel that energy into our work. Sometimes literally, by creating a character just to kill them in a horrendous bloodbath. Or we throw a ‘happily ever after’ love story at another character. But…how? Perhaps writing is like therapy, a chance to be sad, be angry, be delirious, be hopeful, be madly in love, be homicidal, etc…in an environment that won’t gain us a shiny new set of metal bracelets that only come off with a key.

Author friends of America (and especially my NaNo comrades) and everywhere else in the World, I’m challenging you to do this today. This week. This month. The remainder of this year, and into the next. Channel today’s rage or sorrow, your love or fear, and put it down onto the page. Torture your babies with it, because this is what makes good fiction. And right now, I do believe the world needs more good fiction.

We use what we have, or what we are going through, and write it into our little worlds for the delight of others. This is how we cope with life, and this is how we cope with the voices in our heads. And today, that’s what I’ll be doing. Will you join me?


Salty Wednesday

Ohhhh, am I salty. Why? To be honest, various reasons…it’s been hot as balls in San Diego this week, and with no A/C, that sucks. Then this afternoon, a fire started on the hill at the end of my street and nearly caught my neighbor’s house on fire (two doors down, people…that’s scary close)…no property damage, no animals or humans hurt, thanks to SDFD (y’all rock). But the kicker, the REAL reason I’m nice and pissy tonight?

Google Alerts.

It seems yet another pirating site is offering up one of my books for free in PDF form. Sigh. Normally, it’s my already free titles that make the rounds via these sites, and as soon as I find one, two more pop up. It’s never-ending. It’s annoying. It’s now part of my job, checking to see who is illegally distributing my work. But this site…well…what’s unique from the others is that it shows the actual downloads of the title, so I can clearly see (and do the math) all the possible royalties I’ve missed from this one site. Just this one. Perhaps this week’s heat+fire combo lit up my inner bitch, but I felt the need to immediately post a comment on the site. Not much good will come of that, however, because it has to be approved by the site moderator – and y’all know they don’t want the actual AUTHORS on there.


So I screenshot the page. I screenshot my comment. And I’ll be sending the site a take down notice. Why post about this here? Because I can’t wrap my head around the fact that so many people are so eager to read this book…for free. The first was already free. It is a gift, a taste of the series so readers know if they want to invest in the rest. I just wish those readers understood that if the other books don’t sell because of sites like these, then the first book will no longer stay free. Such a shame. For all. I’ll share the screenshots here…

Beware though…there be spoilers.



So…did I go too far? Am I right to be upset, frustrated…salty? lol What are your thoughts on ebook theft?

Let me know in a comment below. 😉

And so my readers don’t feel shat on…I do love you, I do. These stories could be sitting in a ripped up, coffee stained, scraggly old notebook somewhere collecting dust. But nope. I published them for you. Just so you know, I love you all. But stealing, even if it’s just a $4 ebook, sucks hairy donkey balls, and that $4 adds up, as this post shows. And I’m human. And this human has bills and deserves to get paid for her work. Right?? xoxo

It’s Officially Out of My Hands – Why Waiting for the Editor is Painful

Are you ready for a new Station book?? Well, there’s one coming! The fourth, Dying to Know, is officially out of my hands and flying through the interwebs into my editor’s inbox as I type this. I love her, she’s amazing, but waiting for feedback is stressful – and yes – kind of painful, because now I have nothing to do but wait.

But, equal parts exciting too, because the first round of beta readers also got their copies today, so perhaps this is why my normally dry palms are feeling clammy and I want to shove insane amounts of chocolate in my mouth while checking my email every five seconds.

Will they like it?

Will they hate it?

Will they love it?

I don’t know. O.O Wish me luck. I’ll probably be going a little insane this coming week.

Dying to Know