Music Monday: Beautiful Relaxing Music 106, Soothing Relaxation

What was I listening to this week while I was writing? This beautiful, relaxing, and imagination-inspiring piece of music.  And thanks to such lovely music and a few snow days, I had a very productive week.  So, click play and while the music plays, let me tell you a little about my week and share a sample of what I wrote.

Helland, Peder B., Soothing relaxation. “Beautiful Relaxing Music: Japanese Music, Chinese Music, Romantic Music, Meditation Music ★106.” YouTube. YouTube, 30 Dec. 2016. Web. 19 Feb. 2017.

To be honest, last Sunday seems like two weeks ago rather than just one. (I write these posts on Sunday’s usually.) We were in the midst of a very, very snowy period here in Nova Scotia.  In about seven days, we went from no snow to about a metre of snow, and that spring that the groundhog said would come early looks incredibly far away! 🙂 However, the last couple of days have been fairly sunny and on the warm side of freezing so things are melting slowly.

While I may be pining for green grass and spring flowers, the snowy days did afford me some extra writing time as schools were closed for three days. So, while my sons shoveled and played video games, I strapped myself to my desk chair and took care of business — a lot of it!

On the publishing side of work, So Very Unexpected made its ebook debut this week on Tuesday and was featured in my post on Austen Authors.  The print version also debuted this week, but later than expected as the storm that started on Sunday shut the city down for a couple of days, and my proof copy was delayed in reaching me. However, both print and ebook versions are now available.

Writing wise, I started a re-read of Listen to Your Heart.  That book is going to be put in an anthology, and I am taking one more swipe at picking up remaining errors — not that I will catch them all. 🙂

In addition to starting the re-read of that book, I also worked on the next Dash of Darcy book called Discovering Mr. Darcy.  I am happy to report that I managed to write just under 8,000 words and have completed the first draft. It is now sitting for a few days before I begin going through it to add in the bits and pieces of description and whatnot that I missed on the first pass.

For me, it seems the editing process is less about cutting things out than it is about adding details in. 🙂 Once I have a second go at that manuscript, it will be off to my first reader so she can tell me what I might still have missed as far as plot goes, and for me and my many charts and list, that is where the publication process begins.

And that was my week — other than getting things ready for the blog and to share on social media and other rather mundane businessy type things and squeezing in some homeschooling on the non-snow days. 🙂

Below is a portion of what I wrote this week. Remember, I was writing the ending of this book, so read at your own risk of spoilers. This scene is where Mr. Collins, who discovered Elizabeth and Darcy in a compromising position, finally decides to see reason.

EXCERPT from Discovering Mr. Darcy:  Continue reading Music Monday: Beautiful Relaxing Music 106, Soothing Relaxation

Music Monday: Thunderstruck, 2Cellos

In this week’s Music Monday post, I am sharing a bit about what I did with my writing time this past week as well as a story snippet and a fun video that I think sums up how Elizabeth feels in the excerpt when she figures out exactly where she is.  Enjoy! And have a great Monday!

2Cellos. “2CELLOS – Thunderstruck [OFFICIAL VIDEO].” YouTube. YouTube, 18 Feb. 2014. Web. 05 Feb. 2017.

WRITING NEWS: 

This week has been a low word count week for writing. There were other things that needed doing.  One of the things that I did was create a new cover for

One of the things that I did was create a new cover forSo Very Unexpected So Very Unexpected.   I had one that I was using as I was writing and editing the book, but I wasn’t completely happy with it. I am much better pleased with this new cover.  At the same time, I also created a cover for At All Costs and for the bundled Willow Hall Romance series.  I have also started working on the print cover for So Very Unexpected as well as getting final file formats started. I should have my last edits back this week and NEXT Tuesday, the book should be published in ebook format with print being ready shortly after.

Part of my writing time this week was devoted to the new story I have started and the other part was given to preparing an Austen Author’s post for next Tuesday. The first draft of that post is ready, but it still needs graphics. And I must decide if I am going to do a giveaway.

One reason I did not get as much story written this week is that I have hit a wall of thinking (which means I must be at least halfway through as that is where this wall usually hits). There are details that need to be considered. So while my brain works on those things, I did some reading and a bit of planning.  Between this and the graphic work for the covers, my brain is feeling nearly ready to tackle those decisions.

STORY EXCERPT: Continue reading Music Monday: Thunderstruck, 2Cellos

Music Monday: Relaxing Celtic Music, Peder B. Helland

Helland, Peder B. “Relaxing Celtic Music: Fantasy Music, Flute Music, Harp Music, Beautiful Music, Relaxing Music ★91.” YouTube. Soothing Relaxation, 17 Sept. 2016. Web. 15 Jan. 2017.

This is a fanciful piece of music, is it not?  I found this video about two months ago, and it has become a standard go-to piece of music for getting my mind into writing mode.  There is something about it that just grabs my imagination and leads it down the creative path. It is also calming which helps me shift from the busyness of a family to the right frame of mind to think and create. (Seriously, it almost magical how well it works for me.) Because of these things, it has a place near the top of the playlist on the old mp3 player that lives on my writing desk.  This piece of music does have a connection to some of the writing I did this week — in a roundabout way.  I’ll get to that in a minute.

First, to give you an update on my current writing projects, I have been editing, editing, and editing.  I have completed the first round (the most strenuous round) of edits for chapters 1- 12 of So Very Unexpected.  The story,  which when it completed posting here was around 36,600 words, is up to about 39,300 words currently, and I have several more chapters to go before I am done editing. I think it is very safe to say that this story will cross that 40,000-word novel threshold.  I haven’t made any big changes. It has been more of a refining of what was there — adding details, rewording, smoothing, making certain that Lydia’s eyes which started as blue and ended hazel in the first draft are now hazel throughout — those sorts of things.  I has also been helpful to know exactly what happens in book four before doing these edits since some things tie together there. So, I am happy I decided to finish book four’s first draft before picking up my editing pen on So Very Unexpected.  I will continue editing this week and will more than likely share an excerpt of this story with you next week instead of this week since today, I have something else planned to share with you.

Tomorrow, Tuesday, January 17, 2017, is my day to post on austenauthors.net. My post is about my writing plans for this year.  Part of these plans involves attempting to write Austen-inspired fairy tales.  If you are listening to the music video, do you see how this music could play a part? This music makes me think of fairies and magic and all things fanciful (and romantic 🙂 ).  Another part of my plans for this year involves the creation of a special Facebook Group,

Another part of my plans for this year involves the creation of a special Facebook Group, Leenie’s Sweeties. It is primarily for those who are fans of my books and would like to help promote them, but it is also a place where I hope to interact with readers while I work on putting my writing plans into action over the course of the year.

Now, in place of a story excerpt this week, I am sharing a link below to a story I placed on the Austen Author’s Writer’s Block Forum for my post tomorrow (which means you get to read it early).   This story is an Austen-inspired fairy tale that I wrote a couple of years ago in response to a writing challenge.

Enjoy the story, and I hope to see you at Austen Authors tomorrow!

Miss Contentment: An Austen-Inspired Fairy Tale
Click to read this story on Austen Authors Writer’s Block Forum

~*~*~

Leenie B Books

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Music Monday: Shape of My Heart, 2Cellos

2Cellos. “2CELLOS – Shape Of My Heart [OFFICIAL VIDEO].” YouTube. 09 Dec. 2014. Web. 08 Jan. 2017.

Happy Monday! Isn’t this a beautiful piece of music to start the week? It is one of my favourites to listen to while writing. (Yes, I know I have a lot of favourites, but they are all so good. 🙂 )

I chose to feature this video today for a couple of reasons that are related to what I was working on this week.  First, the plucking of the strings makes me think of traveling by horse or carriage and the constant clip-clop of hooves as you roll or ride along for hours. There was a good deal of travel in what I was writing this week because Bingley had some business to take care of.

Second, the visuals of floating and burning papers made me think of things happening in the plot.  The business our hero left to complete was not of a pleasant nature, and it was the sort of which you do not really wish to have documentation.  (Yes, I am talking about Bingley as the hero here. There is something surprising hidden behind that pleasant exterior.)

I finished the story except for an epilogue, and, thanks to the help of a reader and friend on Facebook, I have a title for this fourth book in the Willow Hall Romance series. Yay!  The title is At All Costs, and I think it fits perfectly since the story, both for the hero and one of the “villains” (yes, one of them — there are several that cause trouble), is a story of fighting for and protecting your love at all costs.

I plan to write the epilogue in a few weeks after I have edited So Very Unexpected. That book is slated to be published on February 14, 2017, so I am busy doing the first round of edits so that I can send it to my first reader, fix what she tells me, and then send it on to my proofreaders/copy editors. This means the story has disappeared from the blog, but I have left a link to a two chapter preview on my Leenie B Books page. I am enjoying going back to this story after being away from it for about two months.  I still love Lydia!

I believe that is all the writing news I have for you today.  This week, I will be editing and working on my Austen Author’s blog post for next Tuesday (which will feature a giveaway).  Enjoy your week! Hopefully, you will get to stop by the blog on Wednesday and Thursday for a lovely painting and a full chapter of At All Costs. 

EXCERPT FROM At All Costs:  *Contains spoilers and a cliffhanger. 🙂 *

The sun was setting as Bingley and Richard wound their way through the streets of London.  They had paused long enough upon arrival to leave their bags at Bingley’s townhouse and for Bingley to stop at his solicitor’s office to check on the progress of marriage papers and a special license.  Now, however, he and Richard had left the favourable portion of town and were slowly making their way down toward the river. 

Bingley waved to some chap who was seated on a crate marking things off in his notebook. 

“She sails at dawn,” the man called. 

“Where to?” Bingley called back.  Continue reading Music Monday: Shape of My Heart, 2Cellos

Music Monday: Have Yourself a Very Merry Christmas, Brett Eldredge

CMA Country Christmas. “Brett Eldredge Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas CMA Country Christmas 2016.” YouTube. YouTube, 28 Nov. 2016. Web. 17 Dec. 2016.

On Friday night, my husband and I were watching CMA Country Christmas along with about three other shows since my husband had the remote 😉 when, as chance and commercials on other stations would have it, we landed back on this program in time to hear this song. As you can probably imagine, this song has been in my mind a lot over the last couple of months as I wrote and edited A Very Mary Christmas. 

Since I loved this performance of the song, and A Very Mary Christmas will be available to read this Tuesday, I decided that this song must be the one I shared today. (Even if I did share another singer’s performance of this song a couple of weeks ago. 🙂 )So, as the song plays, or after you watch the video, let me share part of what has been going on in my writing life. (And yes, there is a story snippet.)

First, A Very Mary Christmas will be live on Tuesday. If you have not yet ordered a copy, you can do that at this link –> Get A Very Mary Christmas . Making certain that everything is ready for the release of this book has taken a good amount of my time this week because I was preparing a special giveaway to celebrate the launch.  This giveaway will be hosted on AustenAuthors.net on Tuesday, December 20.

Next, along with getting that blog post ready for next Tuesday, I also started the discussion for the Austen Author’s Emma Read Along this past Wednesday. We only have two more weeks of reading and that novel will be done — which means we are at the “good part” IMO. This week, we read Frank Churchill’s letter of explanation and Mr. Knightley’s reaction.

Last, I did manage to squeeze in a little writing time yesterday (finally).  I am still working on the Willow Hall Book 4 story with no title. 🙂  So, that is what I will share a little snippet of today.  If you are following along with the Thursday’s Three Hundred posts, this one is from way down the road, so read at the risk of spoilers. 🙂 Continue reading Music Monday: Have Yourself a Very Merry Christmas, Brett Eldredge

Music Monday: Kiss Me – Period Dramas

CONNECTION BETWEEN STORY AND SONG: 

I have been busy editing for the last couple of weeks, but The Tenant’s Guest is finally off to the first reader.  Yay! The story has some additions to it that were not part of the original posts here on Thursday’s Three Hundred.  One of those additions can be found in this scene…which begins with a kiss.

Just a note: This has not gone to my proofreader, so there are bound to be mistakes. This stage of the editing process is working on story elements. All the mechanics come next. 🙂

EXCERPT FROM TheTenant’s Guest by Leenie Brown: 

“You truly wish this?  You would have me, arrogant man that I am?”

“I would.”

He tossed his hat on the ground and, taking her face in his hands, bent to kiss her.

The sensation of his lips pressed against hers took Elizabeth by surprise, and without her willing it to do so, her  body leaned into him and her arms wound around his waist as if they knew exactly what to do.  It was no wonder some ladies found themselves in compromising positions when their senses were so attacked as to be wholly outside their own power, Elizabeth thought as she stood some moments later, wrapped in Darcy’s arms, her head on his chest.  Her mind even now knew that standing here, embracing and being embraced, was not proper, but her body was not willing to listen to anything but the beating of his heart, which matched her own rapid pulse.  It was with regret that she followed his lead and slowly stepped away from the embrace when finally both hearts had returned to a more normal rhythm.

“I must go on,” said Darcy, “and you must return to Willow Hall.”  His hand caressed her cheek, and his smile looked almost sad.  “I will call later at a proper time if you are agreeable.”

She nodded.  “I would be happy to receive your call, Mr. Darcy.”

“Fitzwilliam.”  His voice was soft. “You must call me Fitzwilliam for I intend to call you Elizabeth.” There was a stubbornness to the set of his mouth and eyes as if he were prepared to defend his decision.

She raised an impertinent brow and attempted to keep from smiling but could not.  “Will it not seem strange to the Abbots if we address each other so informally?”

He chuckled.  “Indeed it would, but I do not intend to call you Elizabeth save when we are alone as we are now. I have referred to you as such in my thoughts for some months now.”  He shook his head.  “Nay, nearly a year.”

“A year?” She looked at him in question, not only because of the length of time that he had considered her, but because in contradiction to his words of needing to leave, he had tucked her hand into the crook of his arm and was walking with her back toward Willow Hall.

“I do not know exactly when I began to think of you in such familiar terms, but I am fairly certain that it was after your stay at Netherfield.”  He smiled sheepishly at her.  “You were charming.”

“I was not,” she disagreed.  “I was disagreeable.”

He shrugged.  “It was most charming.”

She laughed and held his arm more tightly as she stepped towards him as if there was something about his person that drew her to him.  “So I have not only promised myself to an arrogant man but one who finds argument and debate to be charming?”

He nodded.  “So it would seem.”

She heard him sigh.

“Do you regret your answer?” he asked.

Elizabeth shook her head and then lay it against his shoulder.  “Not this time.”  The letter in her pocket reminded her of just how fortunate she was to have been given this opportunity to correct her mistake. “I shall never regret it,” she added softly.

~*~*~

The Willow Hall Romance Series

And Then Love2

A Pride and Prejudice Prequel ~ Willow Hall Romance, Book 1

Events from the past combined with threats in the present threaten to tear Lucy and Philip apart unless Darcy can help his friends save their blossoming love and rid Lucy of her uncle once and for all.

PREVIEW

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The Tenant's Guest (1)

Available to be read in its rough draft, Thursday’s Three Hundred, form here:

PART ONE, PART TWO, PART THREE, PART FOUR, PART FIVE, PART SIX, PART SEVEN, PART EIGHT, PART NINE,PART TEN, PART ELEVEN, PART TWELVE,PART THIRTEEN, PART FOURTEEN, PART FIFTEEN, PART SIXTEEN, PART SEVENTEEN, PART EIGHTEEN, PART NINETEEN, PART TWENTY, PART TWENTY-ONE

Publication Fall 2016

So Very Unexpected

Now posting in Thursday’s Three Hundred

PART 1, PART 2, PART 3, PART 4, PART 5, PART 6,

PART 7PART 8Part 9Part 10Part 11Part 12,

Part 13

Publication Winter 2017