#WIPpet Wednesday - Goth of Christmas Past - The Circle MkII #amwriting #lgbtqia

All of the news!

I've been so busy this past couple of weeks, I didn't blog at all last week, and my house is wall-to-wall dog hair, but...

Goth of Christmas Past is written, and alpha-read! Thank you, lovely husband :) Nige is a sound/lighting tech, which is very helpful when it comes to feeding back on a story that extensively features a recording studio ('you mean haze, not smoke, never tell them it's smoke or they cough and complain', and 'why is he up a tower when they've got programmable lights?' and 'try re-patching cables instead...' and so on and so forth), except that now he wants a job there, LOL. It's also with the first beta-reader, who tells me it's got a good start. Cheers, Al. x That's...a good start! :)

My next mission—aside from 'hinting' that I need more beta-readers—is to come up with a series title. Why? Well, this is part of Hiding Behind The Couch, but it's kind of a spin-off too...HBTC TNG? Or something like that. Not. I'm thinking along the lines of 'Assets' but catchier. I have time to decide, anyway, but feel free to throw suggestions my way.

Also, I've been playing around with the new version of the cover, which is—hopefully—more 'New Adult'. Again, the illustration is the work of the super-talented Emma Pickering. No doubt, I'll tweak and refine a bit more before I finally settle on it being right.

Any readers of HBTC will know the series centres on a group of nine(ish) friends – The Circle: Josh, Shaunna, Dan, George, Adele, Kris, Eleanor, Andy, Jess and Sean. Krissi in Goth of Christmas Past is Shaunna's daughter, and Jay is Krissi's best friend.

The setup for this series is much the same: although Krissi and Jay are the central characters in GOCP, there is a broader group of friends/colleagues who will be more prominent in future stories. Probably. Depends on them, really. ;)

I've posted snippets featuring Krissi and Jay, so...it's time to meet someone else. This snippet features Karen Deakin, Krissi's former assistant manager, and Karen's wife Bridget. That's an L and a B, in case you're wondering.

As for maths...erm...there are fourteen letters in the first line?

“You didn’t cancel.”

“No, I—”

Karen ended the call quickly before she eavesdropped any further. That put a bit of a downer on the evening, and it hadn’t even begun yet. She was surprised at Krissi, and disappointed. They’d worked together for five years and been friends since the start. In all that time—even when Krissi was her manager—Karen had never known her to not speak her mind.

Bridget’s car pulled up outside, which stopped her dwelling on it for the time being; she’d have to say something to Krissi later, though, or she’d drive herself nuts.

“That off-licence is rubbish.” Bridget marched past on her way to the kitchen. “They don’t sell crates of beer.” She brusquely tugged two four-packs from the bag and shoved them into the fridge.

“That’ll be enough, though, won’t it?” Karen said. “Krissi’ll be driving. I’m not even sure Wotto drinks.” She tried to recall if he’d been on the beer at their wedding, but it was a bit hazy.

“For tonight, yeah. But it’s nice to have it in the house at this time of year.” She closed the fridge and turned to Karen with a suggestive grin. “Especially as you’re not breastfeeding anymore.”

There was that, she supposed.

Bridget kissed her on the way past. “Going for a shower.”

“OK.” Karen watched her leave and sighed. She wanted to still be breastfeeding, but Molly had never latched on properly, making it unbearably painful, and there was nobody offering support. Or that’s how it felt.

* * * * *

What is WIPpet Wednesday?

WIPpet Wednesday is a blog hop where authors share from their current works in progress - expertly organised/hosted by Emily Wrayburn - and the excerpt has to relate to the date in some way. For links to other fabulous authors' WIPpets, visit: http://www.inlinkz.com/wpview.php?id=355404

Thanks for reading
Deb x


  1. Anonymous12:34 pm

    Great snippet!
    And i totally feel for Karen at the end. I felt that way with both kids, and yeah,no one seemed to understand why it was so hard for me.

    1. It's so hard, isn't it? But it's like we all enter into some silent agreement not to warn prospective mothers.

  2. 1. My house is wall-to-wall laundry and dishes. Want to trade? :D

    2. I hope you know you almost don't even need to ask if I could beta, as long as you trust me. :) Door's always open.

    3. No clue on titles. Can you bend the original title in some way? With my Notes from Boston series, for now it's numbered and titled. But once #4 is done, future ones will just keep the same format (one-word music-related title) and have a subheading of "a Notes from Boston story" or something. Maybe that's no help, LOL.

    4. The snippet! I love it. I rarely say so because I was going to train as a lactation consultant (but then never did). I absolutely hated breastfeeding. Didn't care for being pregnant either. I did do extended breastfeeding, but I had to bootstrap it--I didn't really have support aside from my spouse and the kids' pediatrician. A lot of people just thought I should give up. My research for my MS Ed was on that subject.

    1. Um, think I'll keep the dog hair. :D

      I 100% trust you! And thank you. :) I'll email you - I need to have one last look through it in relation to something.

      I was thinking that - bending the series title - but maybe just the subheading of 'a HBTC story' would work.

      Breastfeeding...urgh. My eldest fed well, and Nige fed her expressed milk at night, so it worked out, although my mental health was pretty shocking at the time. With my youngest, she wasn't having breastfeeding at all, and the support from healthcare professionals was nonexistent to the point of being obstructive at times. Pregnancy is awful, IMHO, and mine were mostly straightforward.

    2. I never realized how tied to my feelings about my body and my gender were so intimately tied with pregnancy. My second one especially was awful, but I didn't at the time have words to explain anything other than the physical illness. I have complicated feelings about being glad my body had the ability to grow and nurture two whole humans, but there are things even now I don't know how to explain.

      My research on breastfeeding indicated the number one indicator of success across every single demographic was...support. Shocking, right?! That includes all types--social, emotional, physical.

    3. I thought I'd replied to this. :/

      Interesting you should mention gender and pregnancy - that's one of the times I felt most oppressed by being a woman, mostly because of the social expectations that accompanied it. At that point, we had only maternity support in the UK, and we had to fight for Nige to receive child benefit instead of me. Healthcare professionals insisted on referring to him with my last name and people kept telling me all the time about how motherhood would take over and I'd want to stay home and just nurture these delightful wee things forever more. Um, nope.

  3. I'm coming in late this week. (details in my upcoming WIPpet) And, if you want, you have another beta. I do more than SFF, just so you know. But I won't be able to until mid March. I should be finished with both my upcoming promotion and the novel I'm currently developmental editing.

    As for the WIPpt: I love the mother's perspective here. People judge on whether you breastfeed or not, and most of it is their looking down their noses because you don't/can't.

    1. I still haven't made it all the way around this week yet. I was visiting on my phone but half of the comments sections don't work (or not in a way I can use them - that' s me, not the phone/blog sites).

      Beta-reading - yes please, and mid-March is fine. Thank you. :) I'll chat to you about it elsewhere.

      When my sister decided not to breastfeed her daughter, she apologised to me. I felt awful, because with her son (her firstborn), I'd tried to be supportive of her breastfeeding, and I think she thought I'd be disappointed, but I wasn't at all. Feeding should always be what's right for the parent(s) and (secondarily, perhaps) the child.


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