It’s finally here! Bad for You is now available on ALL RETAILERS! Whoop Whoop! I can not wait for you to dive into Stitch and Shayla’s story. This is a heartbreaking, swoon-worthy, slowburn romance with ALL the feels. Bad for You is book three in the Dirty Deeds series, but can absolutely be read as a standalone. So get yourself set up with a glass (or bottle) of wine, a box of tissues, your ereader, and enjoy the ride back to Dogwood Beach!
He didn’t want to be bad. He just didn’t have a choice…
Shayla Perkins isn’t the kind of girl who makes the same mistake twice, especially when it comes to Sean “Stitch” Molina. So when he gives her the world’s biggest rejection, that’s it–she’s done. Until the sexy, silent, unavailable Sean makes Shay a very personal offer. Of course, it still doesn’t mean he’s interested in her. Or does it?
Sean has done things in life. Bad things. And he’s paid the price. All he wants now is to make up for his past by doing good in the present. And no one deserves more good than Shay. Beautiful on the inside and out, Shay is the kind of woman who should be cared for and protected–especially from a man like Sean. He’s tried to keep his feelings for her in check, but a single, reckless impulse pulls them closer than ever before.
Soon the two are sharing their biggest dreams and satisfying their deepest desires. But what will happen if the only way to truly give each other what they want most…is to let each other go?
Praise for Bad for You
“A heartbreakingly beautiful book worth the entire universe of stars!!!” – Bookalicious Babes Blog
“I thought I loved Four Letter Word, but Bad for You is now my absolute
favorite in the series.” –Dirty Girl Romance
“I read this book in one sitting and loved the story, loved the writing, and loved the romance.
This is definitely a new favorite!” – Aestas Book Blog
“Bad for You takes all the things that make Ms. Daniels’ writing so addictive and raises them to the next level. And the end result is a book that is moving and heartfelt and sexy and swoony and a little bit heartbreaking. And perfect.” – Panda & Boodle
===> ( ★ SURPRISE! ★ ) <===
For those of you who missed my Instagram announcement a few weeks ago, here are the new covers for the Sweet Addiction series! I’m so in love with this design by Hang Le. I wanted something more uniform and she absolutely nailed it. These. Are. Stunning. Especially in paperback.
Amazon already has these available. (Yay!) Soon the ebooks will be switching over to match.
I couldn’t be happier with these covers. I hope you love them as much as I do.
Here’s a little reading to get your weekend started. Enjoy (most of) chapter one from Bad for You!
I wanted to tell her no. I wanted to lie to Gladys or Dorothy, whatever this sweet old lady’s name was seated in my section, and say we were fresh out of ranch dressing, and the little cup of it that came with her large garden salad was the last drop. If I didn’t and obliged her request, it would mean walking back over to the kitchen window I avoided like the plague and speaking to him—Sean “Stitch” Molina. The keeper of the dressings. The cook at Whitecaps Restaurant. He hoarded the ranch back there, and the only way to get more of it was with words.
And we didn’t do words anymore. Not as of eight months ago.
So, instead of doing my job as a waitress, I contemplated the dishonest route, which could very well get me fired.
Was I willing to roll those dice? Maybe. It might be worth a shot. My boss, Nate, could overlook my wrongdoing. He was understanding enough.
We’re fresh out of ranch, I could tell the lady. And all other dressings, for that matter. I am so sorry. Could I maybe get you another refill? Or something else not located in the kitchen?
I thought on this plan—it could work. Maybe she would believe me. Or maybe she would rethink her request and decide she no longer needed more dressing.
Help a fellow woman out here, Millie. Christ.
“I just need a little bit more,” the lady requested with a gentle smile. “Would you be a dear? I won’t trouble you for anything else, I promise.”
“Of course,” I replied, the response compulsively leaving my tongue. I couldn’t fight it. I couldn’t lie. I’d feel terrible.
Besides, this was my job. If someone requested more ranch dressing, I got them more ranch dressing, even if it meant speaking to the man I was completely and pathetically infatuated with, no matter how badly it hurt me to do so.
I gave the lady a smile in return before moving away.
My steps were slow as I weaved between tables and headed toward the kitchen. I tried to keep my head down, to focus on the tile floor disappearing beneath my feet, but I couldn’t.
I had to look.
Who was I kidding? I wanted to look.
As I approached, Tori was leaning close to the window that separated Sean’s domain from everyone else’s. She slid two plates of food off the ledge, commenting, “Looks good. Thanks, Stitch,” before walking off to deliver her orders, winking at me as she passed.
Sean only went by Stitch when he was here, I was assuming. I wouldn’t know for sure since I’d never spent any time with him outside of work. It was a nickname Tori and I had given him when he’d cut himself a bunch of times during his first week on the job, and he didn’t seem to mind being called that.
Back then, he didn’t seem to mind a lot of things, like listening to me talk and talk about anything and everything, putting my problems on him in between waiting tables, my stresses, my fears, needing a person to vent to and him being the only person I wanted to vent to because of the way he listened and looked at me.
No one had ever seemed so interested in what I had to say before.
Like what I was saying meant everything to them. Like it was a privilege just to listen.
And no one had ever looked at me the way Sean did—glances that only ever lasted a few seconds at a time, but those few seconds of eye contact—holy crap. I thought my skin was going to combust it would tingle and heat up so quickly. The man had a stare unlike any stare. Equal parts intense and intimidating. But his eyes, sweet mother of God, his eyes were unreal, this rich, golden copper color. And when they were on you, you didn’t just see that beauty—you felt it.
It was a two-punch combo that turned me into a puddle. No man had ever affected me that way before.
And that effect wasn’t going away. I was still feeling it.
Even now with us not speaking to each other, or rather, with me not speaking and him not listening, I still couldn’t get Sean out of my head. I missed what we used to have, yes, but it was more than that. It was so much more.
A man I barely knew, who seldom spoke, and who had never showed interest in me in that way had somehow taken hold of my heart and twisted it all up. I didn’t understand how it had happened, I just knew it happened.
I reached the counter silently, which was a miracle considering how loud my heart sounded in my ears. Keeping my breathing quiet, I looked through that window and peered into the kitchen.
Sean had his back to me as he flipped burgers and stirred something in a pot. I allowed my eyes to travel the length of him, something I hardly ever let myself do anymore. We shared quick glances now, that was it.
Sean was well over six feet tall—way taller than me. His back was broad. His hair was long, a beautiful caramel color, and almost always pulled back; his arms were covered in tattoos and roped in muscle; and he had a thick, short beard that hid what I just knew was a strong jaw.
Sean was beautiful. And he was intimidating. Not just how he looked, but how he acted too.
He smoked. He drove a motorcycle. He never smiled. He rarely said a word. Everything about Sean said leave me alone, but eight months ago I couldn’t.
And eight months ago, I didn’t think he wanted me to.
I thought that was why he looked at me the way he did and listened so well. I wasn’t even nervous when I finally asked him out after hearing about a local party. I was excited.
I wanted Sean. I wanted to kiss him and touch him and God, hear his voice more. I had gotten so little of it. I wanted to do everything with him. And I thought we would. I thought we’d go to that party together as friends and leave as something more.
But Sean wasn’t interested in the more I’d been after. He wasn’t interested in me at all.
Now, that was perfectly clear.
Sensing me, or maybe he was finished minding the burgers and whatever he was stirring in the pot—I didn’t know for sure, since I was still letting my eyes wander—Sean spun around and stepped forward, snapping my gaze off his body in a panic. Our eyes met.
His narrowed angrily, like I’d pissed him off and he hated me for it, and further hated me for catching him pissed off about it.
I didn’t understand that look, but no way was I asking about it. I was doing what I came over here to do, and then, hopefully, staying far away from this window the rest of the day.
Maybe I could convince Tori to put in my orders.
“My lady needs more ranch,” I informed Sean, swallowing thickly when my voice came out sounding stressed and distorted. “Could I get a little more for her?”
Sean’s gaze lowered to my mouth like he was waiting for more words, which didn’t make sense to me, until I considered the one word I left off he was most likely waiting for.
“Please?” I added.
His eyes lifted to mine and stayed narrowed. His nostrils flared. His jaw set.
I almost apologized for being polite and for not lying to that woman about our condiment supply. Things were so awkward now, I couldn’t stand it. I missed how easy this used to be.
Memories flooded my mind in an onslaught as I stood there waiting, and my back stiffened. I pictured Sean watching me with care and concern. I remembered the smiles behind his beard I used to catch, and the way his eyes would follow me through the restaurant and brighten when I would wave. We were friends. I wanted to scream at him for ruining that. I wanted to scream at myself for still caring. What was wrong with me? He had completely shut me out. We were nothing now. We were this.
But with a quick hand, Sean snatched a dressing cup off the shelf and ladled some ranch into it before I spoke another word. He sat the cup on the ledge, removing his hand before our fingers touched, and briskly turned back to the grill without giving me another glance.
“Thank you,” I mumbled at his back, turning before I lingered another second.
He shut me out. I needed to do the same to him.
I delivered the cup of ranch to the sweet old lady, picked up a check for a table who didn’t wait for change, and took care of their tab at the register. Then because I didn’t have any other tables needing anything from me at the moment, I moved to a vacant booth far away from that window and busied myself filling ketchup bottles.
The next time anyone needed extra dressing, I’d send Tori.
Three Days Later
I am getting one of everything.
Twisting the dial on the radio, I quieted the music I was listening to when the truck ahead of me pulled forward, allowing room for my Civic to squeeze up next to the speaker.
Mouth already salivating, I rolled my window down.
“Welcome to Taco Bell. Can I take your order?”
My stomach growled as I surveyed my choices.
I eyed the fiesta taco salad. The quesarito. The never-ending list of combos and the specialty options. Everything intrigued my taste buds.
I stuck my head out the window and directed my order at the speaker. “Can I have a number six, please? Chicken supreme with a soft taco? And a Mountain Dew.”
“That’ll be six fifty-seven at the second window, please.”
I couldn’t pull forward yet, so I kept my foot on the brake, and just as I was about to roll up my window to keep the cool March air from filling up my car any more, a song I knew and loved began playing low through the speakers.
I had no idea what the name of the song was or who sang it, but I knew every single word. And this was not a song you didn’t crank up and sing along to with your windows down.
Fingers twisting the dial until music poured out of my car, I started moving my hips in time with the beat and smacking the steering wheel, eyes closing and fingers snapping as the lyrics left my mouth.
“Oh oh oh oh oh oh,
You don’t have to go, oh oh oh oh oh
You don’t have to go, oh oh oh oh oh
You don’t have to gooo.”
The drum kicked up. I shook my head and felt pieces of my short, dark hair lash against my cheeks.
The girl giggled through the speaker.
Smiling and not feeling one bit of shy about the audience I was entertaining, I leaned halfway out the window and sang to her as loud as I could, reaching and pointing like she was front row at my concert.
“Ay ay ay ay ay ay
All those tears I cry, ay ay ay ay
All those tears I cry, oh oh ah ay
Baby, please don’t goooo.”
She laughed harder this time, whooping and cheering me on.
“How’s that?” I asked. “Think I got a career in singing if all my other options fall through?”
“You bet!” the girl yelled. “That was sick!”
Giggling at myself, I sat back in the seat and turned the volume down halfway, noticing through the windshield the space between the truck in front of me and the car in front of it.
My eyes narrowed. I beeped twice. I was starving, and this was not the time to be messing around. What was this person doing?
The truck jerked forward, gears grinding over the music, loud enough I actually cringed. It was an old, beat-up Chevy, covered in dirt and rusted all along the back, with most of the paint chipped off and the muffler barely hanging on by a thread. The well loved and very well used vehicle was probably on its last leg, as was the worn smiley-face sticker half peeled from the bumper, leaving only one eye and half a mouth showing.
That thing had definitely seen better days.
Staring at all that rust, I had a moment of panic when I imagined the truck dying on its owner and blocking my path. Come hell or high water, I’d get my chalupas. Though I really didn’t feel like stepping out of my car and walking inside where the lunch rush sat. I was wearing sweats covered in bleach stains, a baggy sweatshirt, zero makeup, and not a lick of dry shampoo. No way was I presentable for the public yet.
This was why God invented drive-throughs and curbside service—so women like me could sleep in on their days off and rush out the door when a hankering hit without even bothering to glance at themselves in a mirror.
But when the truck made it up to the window to pay without a hitch or stall, most of that panic left me.
And when the driver pulled away after collecting their order and turned out onto highway, all of that panic left me.
I rubbed my hands together. Come to Momma.
“Hello!” I greeted the young girl with a smile and a wave, feeling like we had one of those lifelong friendship connections since I’d just serenaded her.
Grabbing my bag off the floor in front of the passenger seat, I dug around for my wallet.
“No need for that!” she said, turning my head and pausing my search. “That guy just totally paid for you. God…I love it when that happens. It doesn’t happen enough. It’s such a treat!”
I sat up and looked at her more fully. “What? What guy?”
“The guy in the truck.”
Nobody had ever done that for me before, and I used drive-throughs a lot. Well, shit on my head. My first random act of kindness, and I had rushed the poor thing along.
I suddenly felt bad for beeping.
“Yep,” the girl said, smacking her gloss-covered lips. “He asked me how much your order was and gave me enough to cover you both. And he wasn’t bad looking either.”
I leaned closer to the window, my interest in this mystery man spiking off the charts. “Yeah?”
“Oh, yeah. He had that dark, smoldering look about him. Real sexy.”
“Did he say anything? Leave his number on a napkin or something?”
“No.” She shrugged. “Just paid for you and left. He acted in a rush.” The girl turned to pack up my order.
If he was interested, he would’ve gone beyond just paying for my food. I would think he would’ve at least waited before speeding out of here—at least pulled over and given me opportunity to thank him.
Maybe he was just doing a good deed?
Letting myself think on that, I smiled and took my drink. “I’d like to pay it forward. How much is the person’s order behind me? I’ll take care of them,” I said while blindly digging my wallet out of my bag.
“Really?” The girl clapped her hands together and squealed. “This is awesome! And they say there’s no good people left in the world.”
I laughed and made a face like I was agreeing with her, though I really didn’t. I knew a lot of good people. Dogwood Beach was full of them.
And I was blessed to have a lot of those people in my tribe, supporting me, giving me friendship and love, and others, not necessarily in my tribe, but around me enough I got to see their good.
Still, I understood this girl’s excitement. It wasn’t every day a complete stranger did something out of sheer generosity. And selfless to boot. Who didn’t stick around to take credit when credit was due? That was practically unheard of.
It’s funny how a simple gesture can affect you. But kindness was powerful that way. It not only had the ability to alter moods, but it was also infectious. People wanted to spread that good around once they got it put on themselves.
Hell, I was doing it. Maybe the person behind me would do it too, and so on. We could all pay it forward.
Smiling, I thought about that mystery man in the beat-up truck, wondering if he knew just how inspiring he was. How good he was. I hoped someone was telling him.
After safely securing my bag of deliciousness in the front seat, I got the total of the order from the car behind me, paid, got my change, cranked up my stereo again, and sped off, leaving my window cracked so I could serenade Highway 355.
Any Bama Boys fans out there? This Halloween-themed novella is LIVE, and today is the day to read it!
So Much More, featuring POVs from all 4 Bama Boys, offers you some tricks and MORE than a few treats.
Need an example? Keep reading for an excerpt from Mr. Kink himself, Reed Tennyson.
I close the door behind me and lock it, drawing Beth’s attention before she stops beside the table and turns around.
“So, I was thinking you could use your belt to bind my wrists together, and then tie the rope to the belt?”
I follow her eyes to the exposed beams above her head.
God bless Danny for keeping shit rustic in here. I fucking love that guy.
“You want your hands above your head?” I ask, stalking closer, my fingers working at my belt. I whip it off.
Beth sucks in a breath. “Yes,” she whispers, tipping her chin up to look at me when I stop an inch away. “God, yes, please.”
I smirk. “Begging already, sweetheart? I haven’t even touched you yet.”
“It isn’t going to take much.”
“Really?” I run my finger down the side of her neck to the dip between her collarbones, feeling the wild hammering of her pulse and the labored swallow she seems to manage.
“Mm.” I take the rope out of her hand and place it on the table with my belt, leaning in to press my lips to her ear. “Get undressed.”
Beth nods once, immediately reaching for the hem of her shirt. Her fingers tremble.
“Nervous?” I ask, stepping back to watch.
“No. Worked up.”
“Reed, you have no idea. I’m like, the horniest woman ever.”
Her shirt hits the floor. Her bra is next.
Panting, she locks eyes with me and wets her lips, and that’s when I finally look at all of her.
I stare at her swollen tits, so full and heavy, and the bump she has.
Being as tiny as she is, Beth started showing early. It seemed to happen overnight. She woke up two months ago and boom. There it was. It shocked us both. Beth seemed a little uneasy at first. But me? I was fucking giddy over it. I still am. I love looking at her. God, I love it. Her body is fucking unreal all the time, but like this? With her nipples a shade darker and permanently hard, just aching for my mouth. The curve of her hips. Her ass, peach-shaped and tasting as ripe as one—I would fucking know. I eat it enough. Jesus. It’s torture looking at her and not touching. But I do look.
Seconds tick by, and it gets to her as much as it’s getting to me. The waiting. The watching I’m doing. Shyness dips her head.
“Do you see how hard I am, Beth?” I ask, shoving my jeans and boxers down.
Head still lowered, she looks at me from beneath her lashes. At my dick, and my hand moving over it. Stroking. I squeeze the tip and moan.
“Fuck, I don’t think I’ve ever been this hard before,” I rasp. “It hurts, Beth. My dick . . . God. Do you see it? Do you see how much I want you?”
She only says my name, but she’s begging me.
To move. To do something. Anything.
I grab my belt.
I don’t need to tell Beth how to position her hands. She knows, and she never hesitates. She never did. Even in the beginning, the first time I did this with her, she was always so willing. So trusting.
That drove me fucking wild. It still does.
Linking her fingers together, she extends her arms out in front of her, offering them to me.
“You were made for me. Do you know that?”
Her cheeks burn hot.
I loop the leather around her wrists, pull the strap through the buckle, and tug hard, tightening it.
She gasps at the pressure.
“Yes,” she says, nodding, wetting her lips. “I’m okay. I’m okay.”
“Fuck, I love you.” I kiss her, fast and hard, and grab the rope.
She giggles. “Wait. What about my pants?”
“We’ll get to that. First things first . . .” I secure a knot around the belt where the backs of Beth’s wrists are touching and test it, yanking on the end and giving her arms a light jerk. “Wouldn’t want you to get free,” I tease.
She blushes and bites her lip.
“So bossy, Mrs. Tennyson. Don’t forget who’s tied up here.” I toss the rope over the thick, wooden beam and pull until Beth’s arms are fully extended above her head. Her back is arched. Her lips parted, breaths leaving her like she’s being chased. If I were to pull any more, she’d go up on her toes, which is typically where I like her to be, but . . .
“Careful,” I remind her, when her eyes question why I’m not putting any more tension on the rope.
She nods once and watches me tie the end of the rope to one of the table legs.
The table is heavy. Solid metal. The only way she’s lifting it and putting slack on the rope is if she starts swinging from it. And that won’t be happening.
I’m a dirty fucker, but even I have limits.
“Now, about those pants.” I move behind her and run my hands down her sides, pressing my lips to the skin beneath her ear as my fingers tease the button of her jeans. “Mm. Do you feel that?” I ask, my cock rubbing her hip. “I think I’ll leave mine on and fuck you like this—just my dick out. What do you think? Are you gonna get it nice and wet for me if I do that?” I smile when all she can do is nod, her breathing so ragged she can’t form words anymore. I unfasten the button and slowly drag the zipper down. “But where should I fuck you . . . that is the question. I’ll leave this up to you. Where do you ache most, sweetheart? Here?” I push my hand into her panties and thrust two fingers inside her.
“Oh, fuck,” she gasps, her back arching away and her arms shaking. “Oh . . . oh, God.”
“No need to be formal when I’m finger-fucking you, Beth. I’ll answer to Reed.” I chuckle darkly, biting her neck. “Now, option two. I’m going to need to slide these pants down so I can get to that sweet little hole. Are you okay with that?”
“So, you’re saying you want me in your ass . . .”
She drops her head forward and whimpers. “You know I do.”
“I do. I just like hearing you say it.” I pull my fingers out and drag them over her clit until she shudders. “Say it, Beth. Or I’ll stay right here and do this for hours.”
I’m bluffing. I’m too hard not to fuck her until we both can’t walk, and I think she knows that, until . . .
“Yes!” she cries out, craning her neck to glare at me. “I want you in my ass, okay? I want you everywhere, Reed. God, just . . . hurry up and do it already. I’m dying. Get in my ass.”
I smile, keeping my laughter silent, and kiss her cheek. “You might want to watch the volume. I’m pretty sure our daughter can hear you.”
Beth blinks, eyes going as round as saucers, her lips pinching together into a tight thin line.
“Horniest woman on the planet. You weren’t lying.”
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Happy Monday ♡
Stepping up onto the porch, I balanced the pizza boxes on my forearm so I could knock on the door. I could hear drilling, which stopped the second time I knocked after my first went unnoticed. Then a few seconds later, the door swung open.
Sean stood there wearing his faded jeans and nothing else.
I’m going to repeat that for emphasis—Sean stood there wearing his faded jeans and nothing else.
His hair was tied back. He was barefoot. His chest was on display. His hip bones were jutting out nicely. He had fuzz running from his navel to below, and his skin had a light sheen of sweat to it, which was basically the equivalent to icing on a cupcake—the finishing touch that really set off the whole package.
These factors, plus others, considering how low his jeans were hanging, had me scrambling to hold those pizza boxes with both hands, for fear I might drop them.
I had never seen Sean without a shirt on before. I figured he had ink on other parts of his body, not just his arms, and he did. His chest was covered in tattoos, as were his shoulders and his ribs, colorful designs that looked to be random, but I was betting they weren’t. His abdominals were bare, which, even though I had a major thing for body ink, I was grateful for, considering what his abdominals looked like.
Hell, what all of him looked like.
Sean had a body like an Olympian. Like one of those track runners who still had the sculpted upper torso. He wasn’t bulky, but the muscles he did have were so finely cut with perfection, you’d think it was God himself who touched Sean after uttering the phrase Let there be light, plus gorgeous male physiques.
Bad For You releases 1/23/18. Preorder now!
The first book in the Alabama Summer series is FREE!
✓ Single Dad
✓ Enemies to lovers
If you haven’t read this series yet, here is your chance to start!
A New York Times bestselling enemies to lovers STANDALONE
When Mia Corelli returns to Alabama for a summer of fun with her childhood best friend, Tessa, there’s only one thing keeping her on edge. One person that she’d do anything to avoid.
Benjamin Kelly. World’s biggest dickhead.
Mia hates him with a fury and has no desire to ever see him again. When she decides to start her summer off with a bang and finally give away her v-card, she unknowingly hands it over to the one guy that excelled at making her life miserable, learning a valuable lesson in the process.
Always get the name of the guy you’re going home with.
Ben can’t get the girl he spent one night with out of his head. When she leaves him the next morning, he thinks he’ll never see her again. Until he sees her lounging by the pool with his sister.
Mia is determined to hate Ben, even though she can’t forget him.
Ben is determined to prove he’s not the same guy he used to be.
What happens when the one person you wish never existed becomes the one person you can’t imagine being without?
A FRIGHTFULLY GOOD TIME!
After weeks of anticipation, Eye Candy is now available everywhere, and I couldn’t be more excited, or more proud, to be a part of this fabulous Halloween-themed anthology. Seeing my name on the cover of a book with four fellow authors that I admire is frightfully good.
My novella, So Much More, features the Bama Boys. That’s right! I had the BEST time catching up with the gang! Have a favorite? Nothing to fear here—I treat you to a little time with each. So, grab your copy, get comfy and feast on this delicious taste of Ruxton, Alabama… and so much more.
We have a blurb, people!!! EEEEEK!
Stock up on tissues and liquor. xoxo
Shayla Perkins isn’t the kind of girl who makes the same mistake twice, especially when it comes to Sean “Stitch” Molina. So when he gives her the world’s biggest rejection, that’s it—she’s done. Until the sexy, silent, unavailable Sean makes Shay a very personal offer. Of course, it still doesn’t mean he’s interested in her. Or does it?
Sean has done things in life. Bad things. And he’s paid the price. All he wants now is to make up for his past by doing good in the present. And no one deserves more good than Shay. Beautiful on the inside and out, Shay is the kind of woman who should be cared for and protected—especially from a man like Sean. He’s tried to keep his feelings for her in check, but a single, reckless impulse pulls them closer than ever before.
Soon the two are sharing their biggest dreams and satisfying their deepest desires. But what will happen if the only way to truly give one another want they want most . . . is to let each other go?
Add Stitch to your TBR ➜ Click HERE.
Pull up a chair. Let me tell you a little story about Reed…
When I originally wrote WHEN I FALL, I got about 40k into it and completely scrapped the entire thing. I remember reading it and reading it and READING IT, and it just wasn’t Reed & Beth’s story to me. I liked the story, but it didn’t belong in Alabama. It didn’t feel like them. So, even though it stressed me the F out to do so, I put that 40k aside, and with all the anxiety in the world twisting me up about it, I started over.
And then I wrote the WHEN I FALL that got published, which turned out to be my favorite story (so far) in that series. Hands down. I’m incredibly proud of that book.
So listen, it’s OKAY to start over. It’s OKAY to listen to yourself and go in a completely different direction. And for God’s sake, it’s OKAY to push a release date because you need to make some adjustments, whether minor or major, like I did.
I’m writing this out for anyone who needs to read it, but I’m also writing this out for me, because I still struggle with saying “it’s OKAY.”