Excerpt.......from chapter 1


Written on Saturday, March 29, 2008 by haleigh

From chapter one - when Cole wakes up from the blast that killed his partner, and first meets Shae.
He had to escape – that much was for certain. He tried to sit up but gentle hands pushed him back down.

“Shhh,” a voice said.

He instantly relaxed. It was an angel’s voice. Smooth and soft and husky. So he was dying . The angel made more comforting noises and brushed cool fingers across his forehead. An icy cloth followed, making him groan aloud with relief.

Death was okay then, if she was how he got there. He slit open one eye to get a look at what god had provided for his last wretched moments on earth.

His angel of mercy didn’t look so hot. In fact, she looked kind of sick. Dark stringy hair was piled on top of her head, her skin was clammy, her eyes were sunken, and on top of it she smelled bad.
But maybe all was not lost. He let his eyes travel down past her neck and shoulders toward the lush body he was sure god granted him in his mercy.

He groaned aloud at what his eyes encountered. “I at least deserve boobs.” From the look that crossed her face, she caught his creaky, barely intelligible words.

“Excuse me?”


She held a bottle of water to his lips, though her look was still wary. He closed his eyes a second, and waited until the room stopped spinning before looking at her again.

His angel had fewer curves than a twelve-year-old Korean boy. She was skinny, with no boobs, no hips, and no…well, he couldn’t see her ass from here. Maybe there was hope for redemption yet. “Do you have an ass at least?”

She flung the washcloth she was holding directly onto his face, so that it covered his eyes. “You’re a pig, Mr. Cole. And I’m going back to bed.”

He managed to get the washcloth off his face in time to see her walking away. Yep. Great ass. “Oh come back,” he said. “I’m bleeding. You can’t leave a bleeding man to his death, can you?”

She turned back to him, her slow movements exaggerated in what he had to assume was a killer hangover from the way she smelled. Her eyes were flashing, making her look a little less hideous than she had a moment ago. “I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to live with my conscience.”

He tilted his lips in a crooked smile that had women all over the world swooning at his feet. “Come back, baby. Be my Florence Nightingale.”

This woman was not impressed. She backed up with a hand over her heart. “Well, that’s just about the nicest thing anybody’s ever said to me.”

She turned back to the door. “Okay, okay,” he said, trying not to laugh. “I'm sorry. My mother should be ashamed of herself for raising such a reprehensible, chauvinistic monster. That doesn’t change the fact that I’m actually bleeding.”

He could see her wavering. She may not be an attractive woman, but he couldn’t help baiting her. It was kind of fun. More importantly, it distracted him from the images that just kept coming: the rubble of the ice cream store, the crater where Caleb’s car had been....

He focused back on her ass. He could only guess at the exact shape under the baggy men’s boxer shorts she was wearing, but from this angle, he’d have to rate it at least at a seven.

She turned back to him. “Are you staring at my ass?”

“Of course not.” Busted. “What kind of man would stare at your ass after that heartfelt of an apology?”

“You, apparently,” she said.

So this is where my internal editor shows up and starts bitching. "It's not original," she says. "It's a cliche. And Cole sounds like a jerk. What kind of man focuses on boobs after watching a little girl get blown to bits?"

I tell her to go away. I'm trying to write fast here. I can't worry about pesky little things like characterizations. And besides, Cole's been in Iraq for six months. The poor guy hasn't been laid in quite a while - of course he's focusing on the boobs!

"But that makes him sound superficial."

At that point, I just punched her.



Written on Thursday, March 20, 2008 by haleigh

So the race is on...

And I'm losing.

On the bright side, it's motivating me to write faster. The question, of course, is if it's motivating me to write better. At this point, I'm thinking no. Hell, I wrote a sentence that included the word 'armhole' twice. How in the world is that even possible?

But we had this goal of turning off our internal editors until the first draft is done, so I'm trying to forget about the armhole debacle and move forward. Onward and upward, right?

So last night, there was a terrible storm here. Winds coming off the ocean like you wouldn't believe. Did hurricane season strike without anyone noticing? Being from the midwest (and much preferring tornadoes to hurricanes, myself), I decided to enjoy the storm. I wrapped myself in three blankets, trucked my laptop out to the porch, sat on the swing, and cranked out 2,300 words.

That's right, Christie. 2,300 words. Watch out.

The blustery wind was howling, sirens from the fire station down the street were blaring, a car alarm was going off, assorted small animals were skulking between the houses, and the steady creak of the porch swing all created an eerie cacophony around me.

Talk about setting the mood!

Our lovely rum-stealing pirates were talking this week about soundtracks and wandering laptops, both of which I apparently make use of. Anybody else "set the mood" for the type of scene their writing, inadvertently or otherwise?

Christie, Marnee Jo - how are you guys coming? I think Christie is going to take the cake this week with her 11,000 words, but Marn's still got a higher total...

Excerpt.....from chapter 2


Written on Thursday, March 20, 2008 by haleigh

Cole turned to her. “This next part is one of those if-I-tell-you-I have-to-kill-you things.”

“Oh crap. You are a serial killer.”

The corner of his suddenly serious mouth tilted up. “No. But this information doesn’t leave this room. Understand?”

The automatic reply was ‘off the record.’ She stopped herself just in time. “Got it.”

He limped over to the stove and opened it. Curious, she followed and leaned over his shoulder. The bottom of the stove popped out in his hands, revealing a keypad and several other electronic components.

“Holy--” The words died on her lips as he ran his thumb over a metal thing and punched a series of numbers into the keypad. A series of metallic groans and loud clicks filled the room. Shae swung around, looking for the source. The middle of the floor - the exact size covered by a scruffy rug - rose four feet into the air, revealing a complex series of levers and metal arms.

Cole ducked into the opening and started down a flight of stairs. Even from where she stood, she could see that the lower portion of the little shack was a technological feat.

“Oh my god, you’re James Bond.”

He turned on the third step down and grinned at her. “I prefer the Batman analogy myself, but I’ll take whatever gets you naked faster.”

the race......


Written on Sunday, March 16, 2008 by haleigh

In an effort to motivate us, Christie and I have added word count bars to our blogs. Your job is to mock us if we don't hit at least 500-800 words a day during the week, and 3,000 words a day on week ends.

Let's see how fast we can crank out a manuscript. The goal is have a first draft by June/July, rewrite till October, and have it ready for a contest in November.

So far, I've spent most of my time staring at a blank screen, which I call "research." After all, you have to have ideas, right? And then you have to double check those ideas against fact.

That means getting on google, and do you know how many interesting things are on google? Tons and tons of interesting things!

And of course, to write you need music! But all my music is on a different computer. Which means moving it all over. Then the playlists are all organized wrong. So now I have a separate play list for each type of scene I'm going to write. For motivation.

So now I'm ready to write.....but it's been hours, my ass is sore from this chair, and I'm hungry. Tomorrow, I'll be ready to start as soon as I sit down, since now I have all my facts and my playlists.

Yep, tomorrow.