THE PROMISED QUEEN Available for Preorder!

THE PROMISED QUEEN has a cover and is available for preorder! It comes out May 25, 2021. Maybe by then we can do some in-person events? I swear, I want to get an RV and just travel everywhere.

Claim the hand that wears the ring, and the empire falls.

Conrí, former Crown Prince of Oriel, claimed the hand that wears the Abiding Ring, but the prophecy remains unfulfilled. Queen Euthalia of Calanthe returned to her island kingdom, but broken in mind and body. With the blood of war unleashing ancient terrors, Calanthe isn’t the haven it once was. Lia must use her magical bond with Calanthe to save their people while Con fights to hold off the vengeful Emperor Anure and his wizards. Con and Lia will have to trust in each other—and in love—to fend off ultimate disaster.

In The Promised Queen, the thrilling finale to the Forgotten Empires trilogy, the fate of the world hangs in the balance as Con, Lia, and their allies sacrifice everything in a final bid to destroy the corrupt empire.

Meanwhile, I’ve got 63,000+ words on my DARK WIZARD project. I’m really loving writing this book and I figure it will be done in a couple of weeks, God willing and the creeks don’t rise, as my great-grandmother was fond of saying. I’m also working up an exciting new project that will take my author coaching to a new level – stay tuned!

Kill the Rabbit: Death to Plot Bunnies

THE PROMISED QUEEN has a cover! I just love how those jewel colors pop off the screen. This is book three in the Forgotten Empires trilogy, out May 25, 2021. But you can preorder now!

Our topic at the SFF Seven this week is all about those Plot Bunnies: How/where do you corral them? How much room do you give them to grow? Find out why I think plot bunnies should die.

Dear Writers: Enough with Dissing Needlework

Okay, if you haven’t seen the trailer for the new Netflix series Enola Holmes, it’s worth watching. And the show looks great! Except for one thing. Go ahead and watch it. I’ll wait. You’ll know it when you see it.

Yeah. Enola is Not Like Other Girls. And how did the writers decide to show that? She doesn’t know how to embroider! That’s right. Just like another “action-oriented” and “interesting” female character who is Not Like Other Girls. *cough*Arya*cough

Could we dispense with this incredibly tired cliché already? It’s as if writers are going “what is something old timey females did that’s really stupid and boring?” In other words, this device isn’t revealing the disdain of the character for traditionally female arts – it’s coming from the writers’ contempt for them.

I’m going to throw out there that, in both of my examples, the writers are male, which makes the assumption even more annoying – and even misogynistic. Yes, I’m sure there’s an image floating out there of old timey females sitting around in some parlor, primly doing needlework and gossiping like hens clucking. How dull! What ninnies they must be! Surely any sensible, action-oriented and interesting female worth her salt will repudiate such nonsense!

This attitude completely ignores the fact that many powerful people enjoy needlework and fiber arts of all kinds because they are both relaxing and allow the mind to focus on other activities. Listening to music or to someone reading aloud while doing needlework is immensely soothing. Handwork like this is meditative and allows for creative inspiration. Embroidery and similar arts are exacting crafts requiring concentration, dexterity, and the meticulous application of practice and talent. All those people complaining about smartphones ruining in-person socialization ought to appreciate that conversation is a worthwhile pursuit. It’s only when men dismiss women’s conversation as being worthless that it gets reduced to the level of gossip. It’s only contempt for arts that have been considered women’s work that makes it de rigeur for a heroine who’s Not Like Other Girls to shun needlework.

Let’s all roll our eyes at that.

And this photo? It’s a king-size wedding ring quilt I made for a friend’s wedding. I love quilting – but I had to give it up because it used too much of the same creative energy that writing does. I’m thinking about learning to knit, instead.