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Happy Monday! How was your weekend? I spent mine writing (duh!). It’s that time of year again. The time where people all over the globe sit down and attempt to write a 50,000 rough draft in a month. Some of us hit the goal (and have done so repeatedly). Others are still trying (but that’s okay too).

So how have I done so far? Check out my day five progress:

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I’ve been doing double sessions. The first one at midnight for a couple of hours. The second one during the daytime hours for about four hours. It worked well until the weekend when my time was needed elsewhere. So I’ve either got to write a lot more during the week to make up for the weekends or not worry about it and just finish closer to the 30th.

Why the doubling of my time? My family wants to share Thanksgiving with extended family. A houseful of people is not conducive to writing a novel.

A FAVORITE LINE OR PASSAGE FROM MY STORY THAT SUMS UP WHAT I WROTE:

This rough draft is the final, full-sized novel in the Alliance Chronicles. The previous three books are all told from alternating POV. This one, just like the novella, is being told from Asher Jones’ perspective. Writing male POV when you’re a female is a big challenge. Scenes like this one can be especially trying:

I’ve spent the entire afternoon reading the notebook. The sun is setting when I finish reading the last page. Rihana comes into the room and lights a fire in the corner fireplace. The chill in the air dissipates.

“Learn anything,” she asks and turns a lamp on.

“Can you turn it off?” I pat the sofa next to me. “Come sit with me.”

The light goes off and she flops down on the furniture. I put my arm around her and pull her close. We sit there in the darkened room and listen to the crackling of the wood burning.

Rihana shifts in my arms. “My parents will be returning in an hour with Viyan.”

“That’s cool. I just want to sit with you for a minute. I’ve missed this.”

“Me, too,” she admits.

“About Bashur…”

“Shhh,” she snuggles closer. “Talking about him will spoil the moment.”

“Sorry, Ree. We need to clear the air.” I scoot back into the corner of the sofa. She leans back against my chest and I stroke her arm. “I admit it. I screwed up. Spending so much time alone with another woman was wrong. It didn’t matter that I was set up. I shouldn’t have done it. Bashur, however… what he did was such a violation.”

“Aza…”

“Let me finish. I trusted him to watch over my family. I assumed he knew what was best. Not once did I imagine he wanted you for himself. No matter what he told you, I do love you. I’ve never stopped loving you, Ree. You’re my reason for living, you and Viyan together. If anything ever happened…”

Rihana shakes her head. “Do not say that. Nothing will happen to us. And nothing will happen to you. We are going to figure a way out of this and get Raman out of our lives.”

She turns in my arms and our eyes meet.

“Aza, you are still my heart, my reason for waking each day. I love you with every fiber of my being,” she says and caresses my face with her hand.

I take her hand in mine and kiss the inside of it. God… Allah… whatever name You’re going by, please don’t let me lose this woman. I won’t make it without her.

At this moment, I’m speechless but words aren’t necessary. Our lips meet in a slow kiss filled with so much passion, but I want, I need so much more. I need to be deep inside her, loving her.

Have patience.

With surprising restraint, I take my time unbuttoning her blouse. Underneath is a lacy black bra. She moans softly as my tongue brushes across a nipple. The sound goes straight to my crotch.

Just breathe.

The sofa is not nearly big enough for the two of us and what I plan to do. I take her hand in mine and lead her to the floor in front of the fireplace. Rihana grabs the blanket from a nearby chair.

Without any hesitation, she unbuckles my belt and slides the zipper down. Her lips quirk up. I haven’t been a fan of underwear in a long time.

I join her on the floor. My need can wait a little longer. This is all about her. Rihana lets her blouse fall to the floor. The firelight flickering over her golden skin drives me crazy.

My fingers go to her jeans waistband. “These too.”

Rihana’s smile screams innocence but her eyes… those damned, dark eyes smolder, draw me in to her. Her eyes were the first thing I noticed about Rihana years ago. They still captivate me.

I watch as my wife pushes the tight fabric over her curves, hips gently swaying to a tune only she hears.

Damn. Matching underwear.

I’m dying with the need to taste her. I pull her beneath me, letting my tongue explore her hills and valleys.

Rihana purrs and opens her legs. “Yes, Aza,” her voice, full of want and need, begs me.

She doesn’t have to ask. I leave a trail of kisses inside her thighs, savoring her silky skin. Rihana’s hips rise to meet my mouth. This is real ambrosia. The woman tastes like heat and honey.

“Aza,” she moans and twists her fingers in my hair.

I replace my mouth with two fingers. Rihana claws at the blanket, my stroke sending her to the edge.

“Oh, no, baby. We’re just getting started.” I rise up and kiss her already swollen lips.

Unable to wait any longer, I bury myself deep. Rihana is so fucking tight around me. Cries of ecstasy fill the room.

[from the rough draft of Restore: the Alliance Chronicles Book 4]

What do you think? This is as graphic as this book gets (I think). Does the scene work?

THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE I FACED LAST WEEK: Besides writing from the male perspective? I think writing a different culture accurately is a huge challenge. You can research that culture to death, but writing about it requires a bit of finesse. Too far to the right and it seems like a caricature. Too far to the left and it comes off disrespectful. I’m hoping to land some where in the middle.

SOMETHING I LOVE ABOUT MY WIP: I love Asher’s story. Those who’ve read the first two books have met Asher Jones. He’s a friend of Zared’s and a sergeant in the Riza military. Release: an Alliance Chronicles novella is essentially Asher’s backstory. You learn what events happened in his life to make him the man you meet in the first books. Restore picks up right where Rebel ends—Asher has just made a major announcement to Tru and Zared.

Asher is a young man struggling with religion, his beliefs, and his love for a special person. You’ll also learn how Tru and Zared’s story ends.

How am I feeding my soul this week…

In between my writing sessions for NaNoWriMo, I’m also finishing up an ARC by Chanda Hahn, a modern retelling of Neverland, and a new book by Misty Paquette, The Weeds of Detroit. So far I’m enjoying both books.

That’s it for this week.

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