VW lime green van

Favorite Character


or the past few months I’ve had the joy of taking part in a daily hashtag game on Instagram. Today’s post is “favorite character.”

I could seriously go on and on about my characters, as I’m sure most authors could. Their voices are so real to me. Funny thing is, the one character that is my favorite I didn’t create.

Ok, that’s not entirely true. Let me backtrack.

For anyone that hasn’t read my blog yet, a little history. My husband and I started writing snippets of sexy stuff back and forth to each other while he was on military orders. This is what spawned my entire novel. (A decision that I’m certain he regrets now.)

I immediately regret this decision - Anchorman snippet

Anyhow, one day I asked him for help on a scene and he sent me a scene where my hero and heroine are waiting at Miami International to be picked up by a SEAL buddy of the hero. The only thing that I kept from the original scene he sent was the following:

“You brought me a hottie! You shouldn’t have.” He swept Tori off her feet, which caused her to squeal in unexpected amusement. 

“Watch out for her, she’s trouble!” Scott hollered.

Although caught off guard, Tori couldn’t help but giggle at his silliness. “I wouldn’t harm a fly,” she purred.

What was most interesting to me is that this beach bum was so completely different from my straight laced hero, in fact, you would probably never even guess the man was former military.

I started writing more about this character, and honestly he jumped off the page and took on a complete life of his own. I would have never guessed that this SC, Blaze, would become so near and dear to my heart.

Disclaimer: Blaze was a silly placeholder that I put in my first book until I could figure out what this guys name was. Well, the damn name just stuck. I realize, it’s absolutely ridiculous. I even state HOW ridiculous it is in the story:

Blaze was obviously a nickname, and Tori could only speculate how he acquired such a ridiculous name. 

So, now that I’ve bored you with all the mundane backstory (like I’ve said before brevity is not my strong suit), I will tell you a little about Blaze.

Blaze (a.k.a. Ian Hodges) is a former Navy SEAL and military buddy of Scott Harris. They served shoulder to shoulder in Afghanistan together. The men have been through hell and back together and are brothers. They trust each other with their lives.

Blaze is quite different than my hero. He’s a bit of a mess. He’s a weed smoking, VW driving, houseboat living beach bum who pisses off every woman he sleeps with. He’s honestly a damn son of a bitch.

houseboat, man smoking joint and green VW van

“Good to see you too…” he gave me a devilish sideways smirk, “Blaze.”

I let out a hearty laugh. “So is that what they are calling me now?”

“That among other things.” Harris snickered. “Chief still calls you that damn son of a bitch.”

Without divulging too many spoilers Blaze has been through some serious trauma. He’s rough around the edges. A LOT like my MC/heroine Tori. Thus, they become immediate friends. They can relate to each other in a way that even my hero can’t relate to his girl. Blaze becomes the brother that Tori never had.

Once you look past all his filthy, disgusting comments, (believe me, there are several) and get a peek into his heart, you will realize that Blaze, like Tori, deep down is a softie who is just been hurt and jaded by his past wounds.

Blaze is also amazing comedic relief. My inspiration for him was a mix of Sterling Archer, Barney Stinson, and Matthew McConaughey.

Alright, Alright, Alright

Blaze says things like…

“Harris is such a heartbreaker. I’m better looking than him, I promise. You into beach bums? Wanna get some sand up in your crawl?”


What was her name?” 

Blaze scratched his temple. “Honestly I don’t even know. I called her Dolly because she had bleach blonde hair and tits like-”

Oh and there is also…

“I just enjoy knowing where this thing has been.” He pulled the garter to his nose and took a big whiff.

Pairing Blaze up with Tori in scenes became wildly entertaining to write. I never intended for him to become such a larger than life SC. He became so big in fact, that he would even spawn a spinoff of his own that is a current WIP.

So yes, (future reader base that I hope to obtain). You will get a Blaze novel. Why because everyone, (even a damn son of a bitch like Blaze), deserves a happily ever after.

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sometimes I plan, sometimes I wing it

Pantser or Plotter – #IGWritersOct:Day 12


hen I first got involved in the writing community I started hearing the word pantser thrown around a lot. I pretty much figured out right away that it meant writing by flying by the seat of your pants.

I realized also that is exactly what I am. When I first started writing as my bio states, it was just a collection of short stories about this couples steamy encounters. I never intended it to go further than my own eyes. The more I wrote, the more in love I fell with these characters and the more I wanted to share them with the world.

I had somewhat of a general idea on where I wanted my first book to go, and I knew EXACTLY how I wanted it to end, I just wasn’t sure where the story would take me along the journey in the middle. I wrote myself into a lot of corners by doing things this way.

In my head I saw the book like a TV show. Think This is Us, or LOST, with lots of flashbacks to help build the understanding of why the characters were in the place that they were. Pretty much a literary soap opera. Blogs I read and re-read advised against several flashbacks. “But I have so much wonderful backstory written that I love!” I whined to myself. Why are there so many rules???

So, I rewrote the book in chronological story (for the most part). The first Act is the building of the relationship in the past and a lot of (necessary) backstory. It was a much less jarring read this way, and it built the romance between my hero and heroine.

For my second book in the series, I had to scrap the entire book and rewrite it from scratch. The second attempt at Book Two, I wrote about twenty thousand words. I was pretty excited about it. I sent it to my husband (who is my biggest fan and harshest critic). He writes back. Neat.

Neat is the absolute worst thing my husband can ever say to me about my artwork or writing. It basically is his cheeky way of saying he knows I can do better.

My second book has been re-written THREE times.

By the third time around I got wise, and realized I really needed to plot this thing out. I didn’t use a fancy beat sheet, but we sat down and came up with a general outline, of where it had to start and where it had to end. I wrote and sent it to my husband one chapter at a time, because damn if I was going to get 20K words in and start over AGAIN.

I got back no “Neat”, and actually got some “love it”, so I knew I was on the right track.

Ding. Ding. Ding. We have a winner!

I’m really trying to get better at this. I found this fancy excel spreadhseet that really breaks it down. I’ve never been a very organized person. I blame that on the artist in me. My head is like a gumball machine. I have all these colorful ideas rolling around in it and they come spewing out. I’m all over the place at times.

So, now I’m a pantser who is learning to plot. Sometimes I plan, sometimes I just wing it.

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