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Betrayer – 1st draft down


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Today was the day. I finished the first draft of Betrayer. All 90,391 words of it. Trust me, it won’t stay at the number for long once Bev and Amanda get a hold of it, but it feels good. Really good. I was sweating it out on this one, tremendously worried that it would be as brutal as it’d been writing Protector, but oddly enough, it was way quicker and less painful, which came as a surprise. A good surprise.

So I’ve been asking myself the essential question, “What was different this time around?”

Honestly, writing each book in this series has been a distinct and diverse experience. Not once in writing all three books have I come away thinking, “Huh. That was just like last time.” Some of that is because the content is different as the plot moves forward, some is because my style is evolving as the series progresses, hell, it could be that I’m often influenced by whatever I happen to be doing during that time period. It’s hard to say one way or another, and in all likelihood, it’s an amalgamation of all of that and more.

But there are some distinctions that I’d like to outline here:

Watcher cover1) Watcher was like getting on a roller coaster that you’ve never ridden before, and enjoying the hell out of the crank of the chain as you crest the hill and then screaming your head off when you go over the edge.

2) Having said said, Watcher, even having been re-written twice, could be re-written again, but at some point, you have to say enough is enough.

3) Writing your first book means that the only pressure is self-inflicted. It’s never like that again, especially if people like your books. There is ALWAYS someone waiting for the next one.

protector_kindle_fb4) Protector was a right ol’ bastard because I was 60% of the way through the first draft when I submitted Watcher to my now permanent editing team and then realized quite quickly that a big re-write of Watcher was in order. That meant Protector was dead, a complete redo – it just about kicked my ass, and had a profound effect on my psychological state. I came very close to chucking the towel in. It was total hell. Terry, my CP, and Amanda, my copy editor, were the only two forces that kept me going. I’m still grateful for their encouragement in keeping to the path. P.S. – never again.

5) Betrayer was a book that I was looking forward to writing since inception. It’s likely to be the darkest of the four books, and I’m not kidding when I say there are going to be some pissed readers. I’m no George RR Martin, but sometimes, bad things happen, and as an author, you let them. When you get close to the end of a series, the doors shut, the bridges get burnt. It’s scary, and with this book, there are no second takes. Once it releases, there’s no going back. So. If you are one of the readers who wants to send me hate mail – I get it. And it’s okay. Some days, I wanna hate me, too.

6) Destroyer scares me the most. It’s the end of a series that has come to mean so much to me. While the pragmatic, exhausted part of me can’t wait to finish the ride that I started with Watcher, I love Poesy, Adam, Birdie, Haylee, the whole gang at Paddy’s so much that saying good bye to them is hard and emotional. There will be a lingering uneasiness for me as to whether or not I made the right decision. If I gave them the endings they all deserved. But after Destroyer, it will be time to open myself up to a new set of characters who are screaming for my attention. I look forward to meeting them and I hope when the time comes, you’ll look forward to meeting them, too.

Anyhow, a couple of days off before the real work begins. Editing.

Tired but happy,


xo shawnee

Watcher Hits Amazon Bestseller List

You know how I said I was going underground to finish Betrayer? Well, that was mostly true, but I couldn’t resist coming up for air for this one.

Watcher has made the Amazon Bestseller List for Kindle in several categories including:

  • #5 in Paranormal Angel Romance
  • #19 in Urban Fantasy
  • #395 in Kindle Books overall



Thanks so much, you guys!



Going Underground


I’m back from Authors After Dark (AAD). It was brilliant and awesome and chaotic and exhausting and every other spectacular word I can come up with rolled into one. It’s probably safe to say that the convention went out with a bang, and that while most people are sorry to see it end (AAD 2016 was the last one), everyone can agree that they had the time of the life.

Including me.

But now reality has come screeching back into the picture, and I’m at Chez Small eyeing up 6 loads of laundry and many boxes to unpack while wondering what now?

The answer is simple: I’m going underground. Again.

Yep. Afraid so. The summer went by way too quickly, and my deadlines went out the window. I’ve got so much catching up to do that it’s not even funny. October is only six weeks away, people. SIX WEEKS. My mind boggles.

There is no help for it, but to barricade myself in my house. Anything short of that means my brain is likely to wander . . . “Look, Squirrel!”

Yes, just like that.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000032_00046]But the good news is that I’m back on Betrayer with a vengeance. The words are easier because I’ve had a week around other authors. Their enthusiasm, support, and amazing productivity is exactly what I needed to scare myself back onto the road of the righteous writer. I’m on it. It’s happening. Woo hoo.

So if you don’t see me around as often here or on FB or Twitter, you’ll know why. But fret not, Betrayer is still on course to be out by the end of year.

Stay tuned.

xo, shawnee



AAD Bound

It’s been a busy summer here in Watcherland. Two months have flown by in a blink of an eye, and if you asked me to write an essay on “What I did on my summer vacation” you’d probably be slightly bemused. That’s okay, I am, too.

But right now, I’m in Authors After Dark (AAD) countdown mode.


I’m currently trapped under a pile of costumes that makes me look like a cosplayer while trying to figure out how to pack a rainbow wig in a box. I’m not kidding.

So I’ll still be MIA for the next week or so as I go meet readers and do crazy, wacky things down in Savannah, Georgia. If you’re thinking about going, you can still get tickets here.

If you just want to stop by and say hello, the book signing is open to the public on Saturday, August 6th from 2-4PM in the Marriott on River street which is located here.

And for those who are already attendees, you can find me in all these fun places during the show (when I’m not passed out from utter exhaustion).


See you on the other side.

xo, shawnee

Cover Reveal Day

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I’ve been AWOL prepping for AAD which is just over a month away. Don’t ask about the writing; instead, feast your eyes on this. Some days I have to pinch myself.

Coming soon.