Keep your fanfiction to yourself.

“You might want to keep your fanfiction writing to yourself. It’s sort of a curse word, you know? You don’t want to be labeled as a fanfiction writer.”

This is a message I received today. Friendly advice from someone who also wrote to tell me she loved Northland, my last novel.

Hey. Lady. First of all, mind ya neck. What I do in my spare time is none of your business. I’m stoked that you loved Northland, but you know where it all started for me? Fanfiction. Without it, there would be no Northland.

Second of all, telling an author she should keep her fanfiction to herself is like telling a chef not to advertise the fact that she cooks at home. Because the thing is, fanfiction is a hobby. We’re all entitled to those. And just because a chef makes mac and cheese at home doesn’t mean she’s gonna charge for it in a restaurant. Same applies to me; I might take a few more liberties in my fanfiction, but that doesn’t mean I’ll do the same in original fiction. I know there’s a difference between the two.

One is a part of a fandom. One is an industry.

I take my work seriously because I love it. It’s my dream job, and I’m lucky enough to be able to live off of it. It doesn’t matter if it’s research or editing or character development or marketing or formatting or sentence structure, everything I’ve learned started with fanfiction and the people I’ve gotten to know in my fandom.

My writing has changed a lot over the years, but no matter how hard you work, if you erase the beginning, you still end up with nothing.

I know there are writers who start with fanfiction and move over to original fiction way before they’re ready, hence the bad rep fanfiction has earned. But to assume we’re all like that is insulting.

If I were ashamed of writing fanfiction, it’d be like saying fuck you to every single reader who’ve encouraged me to publish in the first place. If it weren’t for them, I don’t even know what I’d be doing today.

I write what I want to read, and I will continue to do so, whether it’s original fiction or mac and cheese.

New Topic. I Chased Away The Plot Bunnies.

I usually hide out in my fort, but I’ve made an effort lately to learn more about my industry. It’s overwhelming when you first start because there’s so much. Blog tours, takeovers, giveaways, author posts, interviews, spotlight tours, bling (what?), swag…and it’s all spread out across multiple platforms. Goodreads is a jungle, I barely even knew Amazon had a community, Facebook is a catwalk (work it, honey, work it), blogs are radio networks you tune in to now and then, Twitter is a timeline of links that take you all over the interwebz, and Pinterest is Pinterest.

Everyone else does it though, so I’ll try harder and keep my envy to myself when others make it look so easy. (If there’s a magic pill, please contact me. I’m serious.) But anyway, it was when reading author interviews I noticed something.

“The characters in my head just won’t shut up.”

I’ve seen countless authors write something along those lines, and I couldn’t agree more. There’s a party up there. *taps noggin’.* But then I saw someone write, “Once a story comes to me, I have to write it,” I came to a screeching halt.

I’m familiar with plot bunnies. They are vicious little bastards, and they can’t form a tidy line and wait their turn. I’ve been attacked by many, but as I saw more and more authors speak about stories they just had to write, I started thinking I should stop using “plot bunny.” Because plots don’t come to me. Sad face.

I racked my brain and thought back on all my novels…

Instead of saying I’ve been attacked by a plot bunny, I should just say “new topic.” Because I’m a friggin’ student, which is ironic; school was never for me. But it’s still true, I get subjects or topics rather than plots.

(I could go with sub plot bunny, since I want my locations to play a part, but my mind goes to BDSM, so that’s out.)

I read a book where a character had been kidnapped. Happily ever after began as soon as the hostage was released, and no. It couldn’t be, so I found the topic of kidnapping and started my research. Aftermath was the result, and I presented it as a paper to my teachers, AKA readers.

I saw a documentary about Alaska. I couldn’t be reached properly for two months because I was busy learning everything I could about this new subject. Then I wrote two novels that took place in Alaska because I wanted my teachers to see everything I had learned.

It was only supposed to be a short story for this anthology I’d had my eyes on…but I had so much to show everybody!

“You want two hot guys fucking each other’s brains out and falling in love? Sure, but let me show you this magical place in the north, too.”

Then you get the reviews. Even better? If you end up with a bestseller.

A good review means I passed the subject! I can finally move on to something new, which might explain why I tend to struggle with sequels. If I’ve already written about one thing, I want something new. Usually. Remember Outcome? Boy, was that struggle real.

My next subject will be Autism. If you’ve read my stories, you know I sometimes sprinkle some Autism in there. Cam in Aftermath has Asperger’s, Flynn in Public Display of Everything is on the spectrum too, but I haven’t seen many books where the female character is autistic. Being autistic myself, I better freaking pass that test, and I hope you’ll like my Aspie girl.

Class is in session, or, as Sherlock would say…


Speaking of blogs, I need a spreadsheet, Wright?

I know, I know, I have a spankin’ new website now and don’t need a blog anymore, but I want a second playground. I’ve been thinking about what to do with this page for a while now. It’s a work in progress, so I left it vague in the banner. But anyway, spreadsheets, be my friends. Pwease?

I’d finally decided to pimp the page a bit, and I thought, hey, I could use some quotes from my books in the background. So I started scanning my novels and found a few I wanted. Then it was Public Display of Everything’s turn, and I freeze at the sight of Flynn Wright.


Friggin’ names. Wright happens to be the last name of another character of mine. You’ll meet him in Breaking Free, which I’m releasing in June. It means there’s still time to change his name, but you spend four hundred pages with a man and then try to change his name. I can’t do it!

Naturally, I turned to my person. Lisa.

IMG_4690I know that now. I’ll spend one of these days writing down all the names I’ve used. Can’t wait!

In the meantime, we have a problem Wright this moment, but trust my editor to fix it.

IMG_4693 There you go.

Cause and effect, peeps. If I hadn’t decided to use this WordPress, I wouldn’t have gone through my books in search for quotes, and Cory and Flynn from Public Display of Everything wouldn’t be doing a cameo in With Brave Wings, Breaking Free’s sequel.

And now that I’ve pressed publish on this post, I can’t act like I’d thought of this all along.