A Long Overdue Update from Olivia Cunning

You might have noticed I’ve been pretty quiet lately. I’m going through a transitional stage in my life and trying to figure out where I want to go from here. I’m not confused about writing–other than trying to figure out why it’s become so damned difficult most days–I know I want to write. It’s the rest of my life that I’m trying to sort out. And I’m not doing such a good job. I feel more lost right now than I have at any other time in my life. When I was home visiting family over the holidays, I figured out one rather large piece of my puzzle. Now that I don’t have a day job, I feel isolated. But I don’t feel that way when I’m around family. So while I was home, I realized that I need to move closer to my family. Much closer. They aged fifteen years when I wasn’t paying attention and I’ve missed out on so much while I’ve been living far away chasing a career I no longer have. Seems pretty obvious that I can move home now that I’m writing full-time. My career moves with me now. I don’t have to move where the career takes me. So based solely on intuition and at the spur of the moment, I sort of flew home last week and I bought a house in my hometown. I’ll be moving into it in April. And I’m stoked about it! So good-bye Texas. You’re a wonderful state with wonderful people, but my family all lives up North and I need to be with them.

Enough about me. I have a lot more news. News you probably care about. :-)

Sinners at the Altar

Sinners at the Altar Cover shifted

I just finished writing it. Like an hour ago.

This book has been a huge struggle to write. Huge struggle! And I know why. First, I was paralyzed by a fear of disappointing Sinners fans with boring wedding stories. We know the couples are going to end up together, so how do I write something compelling and interesting, that Sinners fans will actually want to read? I didn’t want to rush through and produce garbage just to get it over with, so I took my time and eventually the stories came together. Except one. More on that later… Second, writing this book was kind of like saying goodbye to my kids as I gave them all away–one by one–in marriage. I was so happy they’d found love and are getting married, but it’s a bitter-sweet feeling. They’re moving on with their lives and I’m going to end up a lesser part of those lives. Sound weird? I know it does. Imagine you have eleven children who you love dearly and you have to give them all away in marriage in a space of four months. It tore my heart out. It really did. But…

I finally finished it. And it’s good. I might be a tad partial. Jace’s wedding vows made me weep. Not just a few happy tears. No, I sob every time I reread them. Gah! And Eric? Dear lord, the man kills me with his mush. Kills me!

I digress.

If you follow all my word count meters, you might be confused as to why I say Sinners at the Altar is done, when Trey’s story (Choose Your Illusion) is stalled at under five thousand words. You might be thinking. That’s it? That’s all we get of Trey? Trey humina humina Mills is worth way more than 5000 measly words.

Well I have some bad news…

*deep breath*

Trey’s wedding story won’t be in Sinners at the Altar.

*ducks to avoid thrown rotten tomatoes*

I tried to write it. I really did. I agonized over how to get the story out and not give out hundreds of spoilers about the Exodus End series. I even considered cheating and not mentioning any of the things that happen to Reagan and Trey and Ethan in the years leading up to Choose Your Illusion, but I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t. So I’m washing dishes one day agonizing over how to get this story on paper. I’m convinced the story just doesn’t work without all the two years worth of back story between Double Time and Choose Your Illusion. And I’m all pissed off and sloshing soapy water all over the place as I’m scrubbing the hell out of a pan and berating myself for my failure as an author. I can’t do it. I just can’t. There is no way to write it without including back story and back story is so fucking boring to read (and write). I’ll basically be summarizing an entire novel’s worth of information in the fucking back story of Choose Your Illusion.

And then a light bulb went on.

I always have epiphanies when I do dishes. I should probably be glad my dishwasher is on the fritz.

I digress…

So about that light bulb.

There IS an entire novel in that fucking back story and I’m going to write it. I’m not going to summarize it in a wedding story about Trey. I’m not going to hint at it through the eyes of the members of Exodus End in their books. Reagan is part of Exodus End. Reagan is getting a book in the Exodus End series. Which means TREY is getting another book as part of the Exodus End series. I think it will be the second book in the series, right after Insider. And it will be called…

Wait for it…

Outsider.

Ah, I’m a genius! *wink* So the Exodus End series will now have five books instead of four. If you don’t want a second book about Trey, skip it. No skin off my back, but I have to write it. It deserves to be written and not skimmed over as the back story of a wedding in an anthology. So you will get Choose Your Illusion eventually, but it will be part of a full-length novel called Outsider.

Are you done throwing rotten tomatoes? Can I come out of hiding now?

Sole Regret fans. I’ve been so busy working on Sinners at the Altar that I haven’t even started writing Tease Me. *hangs head in shame* Adam is pissed off, let me tell you. He wakes me up every morning demanding that I write about him. I think about his story every day. I dream about it every night. But I haven’t let myself write it. Not while I had Sinners at the Altar on my plate. And I still have to edit Sinners at the Altar, but it’s now time to start writing Tease Me. Finally! I’ve been dying (at Adam’s insistence) to write this book. Here’s hoping that the words come pouring out in a torrent. *fingers crossed*

I’ll be making Sinners at the Altar available for preorder soon. And then you’ll finally be getting a definitive release date! Jeez. Thanks so much for your patience as I struggled to write this book. I hope it’s worth all the tears, sweat, and more tears I poured into the stories.