Leo's Angel Oak Tree

Saturday, April 17, 2010


Today, as I revised and edited one of my completed manuscripts, I noticed my main characters drops the A-word every once in awhile.  One of my beta readers made a comment that if the main characters uses language like that, you want to make sure it is throughout the novel, but I disagree.  My character only uses language like that if she feels frustrated, angry, or annoyed.  However, it isn't common in her language.  So, I have thought about removing it.

In a YAlitchat on Twitter, I asked about this very issue with the agents hosting the event.  One of the agents said a lot of cuss words are generally frowned upon in manuscripts in middle grade and young adult. Also, a critiquer of Writer's Digest commented that having a cuss word in the opening paragraphs of a manuscript will turn off agents and editors.

So, here is my question...Can you put cuss words in your YA manuscript?  Is it appropriate for a debut novel?

What say you, readers?

Thursday, April 15, 2010


One thing I have learned as a writer:  The BEST ideas come at the craziest times.

I just had to share this.  I sat in one of the most comfortable spa pedicure chairs ever, watching According to Jim, and laughing hysterically as the technician scrubbed my worn heels when an idea for my next series leaped into my head.  Just as I thought the idea machine was running dry, the best idea exploded.  I don't want to share too much right now, but I am so excited about this idea, I'm sure the WIP will soon follow!

The BEST ideas come at the craziest times!!!  Lesson learned.

Saturday, April 10, 2010


This is the first kiss between my two characters in Solstice, Grace and Leo. Leo is forbidden to fall in love with a human, but he goes against his beliefs to love Grace. This scene is after he leaves his family and has been missing for several days. Leo doesn't see any point in following the rules anymore:

“No, I won’t lose you.” Leo stated, fuming at the thought forming in my mind. “You are too important to me. I can’t let you go…not now…not EVER.” Leo’s anxiety wavered a smidgeon, as he walked over to me and pulled me slowly from the ground.

“And the worst thing of all… I’ve led Xavier to you.”

I gasped remembering Xavier sitting on the bar stool, smiling. “Leo, I can take care of myself.”

“Not better than I can take care of you.” Leo stated and he pushed a curl out of my eyes. “I have made a lot of wrong choices, but choosing to be with you is the only right thing I have done in my life. I will never regret that choice. And, for the rest of my existence, I will be watching over you, protecting you. Guarding you.”

His hands came up slowly and gently to grasp at the tops of my shoulders. His intense stare captured my eyes and held them there.

“You are so beautiful.” Leo said in a whisper.

He brushed alongside my arms until his hands met my waist. I could barely breathe. My palms felt clammy and my throat was dry as I mentally tried to figure out what was happening. He never acted like this, so human. It’s like he is throwing caution to the wind. Leo smiled a brilliant smile that lit up his whole face, wrapped his arms around me then at the small of my back, and pulled me firmly to his chest.

“I have been meaning to give you something for some time now, but I was too afraid.”

“You…afraid?” It was unimaginable.

“Yes…well…I knew it would be the point of no return and I’ve been resisting it for some time now.” His thoughts ordered his eyes to gaze at my body. “Much too long.”

‘Just spit it out already.” I giggled to hide my anticipation. “I’m dying here!”

“I hope not…that would ruin my perfect record.” He stated with chagrin. Then, his face went very serious. He leaned his head down slowly and stopped so close to my face our noses touched. He breathed in a catch of breath and brushed his lips so softly across mine.

“Mmmm”, his lips vibrated.

Oh for the love of all that is holy!

“Would it be alright if I kissed you?” He asked while he continued to stare into my eyes.

I nodded once not believing that I was finally getting my wish.

His lips pressed into mine, soft and strong. I felt breathless in that moment and closed my eyes. All I wanted, in the world, I had in that instance. His warmth, caring, passion, and unmistakable beauty were fulfilling my desire so perfectly. I wanted so badly to look upon his face, but his lips left mine and caressed my cheekbone. Giving me little kisses that made my skin tingle in pleasure. He held me closer still but started to breathe raggedly in my ear.

“I have never wanted a human more than I want you.” He murmured so delicately. His breath came in shallow gasps now like he had to say the words before he changed his mind. They started to pour out of his mouth like a waterfall pours over the cliffside. “I know that it is wrong to want you at all.”

“Then, why do you?” I interrupted as I leaned my head on his shoulder. Surely I would go straight to hell for this temptation.

I hope you enjoyed this First Kiss:  Leave me a comment!  Thanks for participating!