Sodaro's Stories

February 17, 2017

Lucky Charms Series

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:06 pm
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fd-paperbackSo First Down met it’s publication date of 2016…it was mid-December, but it still says 2016 on it, so it counts. So far, people have seemed to like to my crew of characters, which is always the best compliment.

Some people have told me that my book kept them up past their bedtimes…I do believe that is the ultimate “sorry, not sorry” (at least for an author).

Stealing Second is well on its way to its March publication date. It may be closer to the end of March, but it will be out next month (wow…if saying NEXT month doesn’t light a fire, I don’t know what would). I am putting some final touches on the story for the fictional Kansas City Royals…then it is off to my fabulous reader…then final read through and cover (by my fabulous artist, Amanda Fugate).

Hat Trick was the first one in the series that got written. I have talked to other authors about this, how I knew the end of the series before I knew the beginning and some of them think it makes sense to know where I am going to know how to get there…to others I am a crazy person, and why wouldn’t I start at the beginning? It wasn’t actually a conscious plan. I was watching the hockey game, saw the super fan…and JD was born…Then Ty skated up to him, Chris came with his baseball glove, and Josh with his football. I love it when my characters introduce themselves to me right from the start…makes it so much easier than when they play hard to get.

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January 4, 2017

And then there were six…

fd-paperbackSo yesterday my 6th paperback came in the mail. To say I was distracted while at work, is an understatement, but I still did my job to the best of my ability, so my present and my future are getting along currently.

I am excited about this novel…as I am for all of my ‘babies’ but this one is the first in a 3-part series, which means I get to play with my characters for two more novels…even better, those novels are written, so now it is just editing and polishing things up so that they can join their first one in the PUBLISHED category (moving up from the EDITING category, which then makes room for some new projects to join the WRITING category)…the assembly line in my head is as chaotic as you are probably imagining. ..but it’s fun. Just watch out for the unicorns.

All Josh Matthews ever wanted to do was hang out with his friends and be the quarterback of the Kansas City Chiefs. He didn’t put any faith in the superstitions of his teammates and really played for the love of the game. When he sees a fan holding up a sign during the first regular season game, he decides to put the team’s superstitions to the test. Upon meeting Dillon Winters, and her daughter Lilly, everything changes, including his belief in Lucky Charms. Could this star quarterback find something even more important to him than football?

Dillon is a single mom who knows all too well the high price of fame. Her ex-husband taught her to avoid stars that were only shiny from a distance. She has been raising her daughter and working at her bar and doing just fine on her own. Can she get past
her fears and experiences to believe in love again?

First Down is available on Amazon in both paperback and ebook format. Nook updates to be coming soon.

December 28, 2016

Restless…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 1:24 pm
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Some of the best advice I have ever heard about writing was to work on something new immediately after finishing something, and I have to be honest, this has never been a problem for me as I was always starting new projects (much to the dismay of my current projects and the prospect of actually finishing anything).

The past year and a half I have devoted to finishing projects I have had “done” for a while. Case in point…First Down was published this month and I had originally started the series on the first day of 2012. One one hand, I need things to percolate a bit…on the other hand, get it together, Michelle.

So I am in editing mode for the next two books of Lucky Charms and that is great. Stealing Second  will be out in March to kick off baseball season, and Hat Trick will be out in June and keep all things moving right along. After those two are edited, I will be editing Driven West, which was my National Novel Writing Month project for 2015. This is due out in September 2017.

I love having these projects in editing mode. I love having them closer and closer to ready to be out in the world. It is so exciting to know that at the end of 2017, I will have 10 books out (with Dear Teaching, my NaNo for this year, finishing out the set).

Having so many projects in edit mode though, has me a bit restless. The idea behind beginning a new project immediately upon clicking send is to keep the excitement up…like a new crush after a breakup…just reminds you that you are alive and you don’t spend all of your time worrying and wondering about what you just finished up. Being in editing mode is more work than writing…almost like breaking up with someone and starting up with someone new 6 months into a relationship…if I may continue the metaphor).

So I am just a little bit restless…but will brainstorm and freewrite about future projects to keep the energy alive.

December 26, 2016

First Down

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 2:33 pm
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first-down-final

On December 20, 2016 at 12:13AM, my 6th novel was born. I sent her off to the fabulous people at Bookbaby so they could check her over and format her and get all shiny for the world.

She is already out on Kindle.

She will be coming out on Nook in the coming weeks.

She will be on my doorstep, in paperback format, on January 5th.

As the first in the Lucky Charms series, she leads the way for the other two books, Stealing Second, due out in March 2017, and Hat Trick, due out in June 2017.

This entire series started at a hockey game on New Year’s Eve, 2011,  with one Missouri Maverick’s super fan who danced around in the stands to get the crowds riled up and cheering. One guy, who I’ll likely never meet, started the whole series. He became JD…and the rest of the crew introduced themselves from there.

 

 

October 5, 2016

Ahhh…October…

For some reason, and I do it every year, but I start thinking, “well, time to put this year to bed and get ready for a more productive next year.” NOT this year. No way. No how. I still have lots to do before 2016 ends.

I have two more books to publish this year. First Down is due out this month. It is coming along nicely and I should have no problems meeting my deadline as long as I keep my eye on the prize. I have people helping me from getting too distracted by other projects, so I should be just fine. Stealing Second is due out in December and I have some work to do on that one, but will be fine. (Hat Trick  will be out in March…I give myself a little extra time in the winter months because I know Seasonal Affective will try to show up…

I have only read 10 books so far this year…my goal was 40…so…hmm…well, I will try to maybe double my current count.

I planned to get my blogs to 700…and now I am thinking 650 is a more reasonable goal.

I made myself the promise that I get a new tattoo for every 100 workouts I complete. I am at 57/100 as of today…so need to kick that up a notch as I would like another tatt before this year is out.

I have my project for National Novel Writing Month (NaNo) outlined out and ready for 1 November.Outlined it and let it sit.

I have some pretty monumental changes coming between now and the end of next year, so I definitely need to keep pushing forward and marking things off my list. No time to rest and figure out where my laurels are…

July 25, 2016

Doing better at this author thing

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 4:59 pm
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I have been doing a lot of thinking of where I was both physically and “authorily” a year ago compared to where I am now. (Without a doubt, I am in all ways measurable in a better place now).

The advancements I have made as an author are really the most tangible (and those steps I have taken are the direct result of all that has happened in the past year.)

I now have my 5th book out. Redeeming Trust  was originally promised out last September, but I had some people to meet and experiences to go through before she was truly ready for her close up to the world.

I have my three-book series, Lucky Charms, on deck (pun intended). The game plans is October for First Down, December for Stealing Second, and March for Hat Trick.

I now have a Post Office box. I have, for the first time in my life, some actual roots to a city. Baby steps, I know, but I finally feel at home somewhere.

I have started the initial planning for my 2nd book signing. Details to follow.

I am restocking the shelves of my various novels. Turns out, it is harder to sell them if I don’t have any on-hand.

As much as I have enjoyed my full-time teaching career, I am actually making some plans to be able to see an end in sight (525) to be an author full-time.

Yeah, I am in a much better place in every aspect of my life and looking forward to where I will be another year from now.

March 7, 2016

Lucky Charms

Yesterday morning, as I ate my Lucky Charms cereal, I allowed myself to think about my Lucky Charms series…just briefly…I still have to finish typing Redeeming Trust before I can play with Lucky Charms (and last week I was home only to sleep between work and subbing for finals and such so I didn’t get as much…okay any typing done, if I am being honest).

So I can’t work on Lucky Charms just yet…but I can think about it and come up with a game plan for the series…while I eat my cereal. I mean, they have the same name, so it’s practically impossible to not think of one while I think of the other (I have no statistics to back this up as I have never tried to consciously not think of one while I was enjoying the other — and wouldn’t this be the oddest elephant in the room to intentionally not think of Lucky Charms while I was either eating the cereal or working on the series…I may have gotten off point here.

All three books have been written and typed in the same order: Hat Trick first even though it is last, First Down second even though it is first, and Stealing Second last even though it is second. And if you followed that, you either know me well or are a fellow writer or other creative sort.

I have loved these characters for a couple of years now and am so excited to get to work on them for the world to love them as well. First thing, I have to read through each of them and make notes on what happened when…and then I will start the editing process of First Down which will be much easier than the edit of either Broken Trust or Redeeming Trust because I knew more about the whole book writing process when I started writing this trio. Every book I work on, the process gets more seamless. Now if only every other part of my life could be seamless…but then what would I do? Oh, yeah…I would write more books.

October 21, 2015

Still all day to Play

It happens every year about this time…it starts getting darker sooner, hoodies replace t-shirts (but it’s the Kansas City area, so you might need that t-shirt tomorrow)…but in my mind it’s like a sign goes up that says “Closed until Spring — come back later.”

I am in the process of making a lot of changes in my life and those changes include my mentality of shutting down for the winter. I have things I need to get done this year and I am not allowed to take the winter off. I am making strides toward having a stronger author life (while still embracing my teacher life) and just as I teach year-round, I need to write and edit and publish all year-round as well…as hard as it is to do so with limited sunshine…and to fight my natural inclination to hibernate (I am a true Bears and Cubbies fan, after all).

I definitely have plans to publish one more novel this year. (Redeeming Trust, my sequel to Broken Trust). I also need to publish the short story “Chance Meeting” which is an alternate first meeting for Sam and Ali. I will have it at the beginning of Redeeming Trust and will also likely post it here, as well as trying for magazines and such. I also want to have a non-fiction book out (right now I am leaning toward Words to Write to with the second possibility being A-Z of the Writing Process.) But that makes 4 publishing credits for 2015, bringing my grand total to 9 (two poems in separate collections, Whatever you Make of ItArianna’s Honor, and Arianna’s Destiny).

I have my plans for what I want to publish in 2016, including my Lucky Charms series with First DownStealing Second, and Hat Trick as well as a non-fiction project or two. In order to get all of this done and keep my full-time job and possibly my part-time job, I can’t afford to take off from end of October to end of March because of lack of daylight. I need to play year-round. So, put me back in, Coach. I’m ready.

July 8, 2015

Three times the fun…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 5:20 pm
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So a couple days ago, I wrote about sequels and I thought it only fitting today to write about the unique challenge of a 3-part series. Currently (in addition to editing Redeeming Trust) I am writing on Stealing Second, which will be the 2nd book in the Lucky Charms series.

The entire series started at a hockey game and I wrote Hat Trick (which is 3 goals in one game scored by one player — thus the third book in my series).

Yes, I wrote the 3rd book first, then I wrote the 1st book second, and now I am writing the 2nd book third. (If this is something you can’t believe I would do, I have to ask if you really know me at all 😀

To me, it makes perfect sense to know where everything will end up before I start. Knowing where I need to get my cast of characters helps me to stay focused. I have no personal knowledge, but I imagine it is the same as a runner seeing the finish line. So it is very helpful to know where I need to get everyone and what the answer to the riddle is.

The problem exists when the timeline in my head gets crisscrossed (ugh…the backward pants duo just jumped in my head) but since I am currently writing book two, I sometimes get confused by whether a scene I know exists, whether it happened in First Down or Hat Trick. If it exists in the former – no worries, just add to that event, but if that scene exists in Hat Trick, and I refer to it in Stealing Second, well, that presents some problems as I have not established any of my characters as psychics…but this is where editing comes into play.

My publishing goals for Lucky Charms are as follows:

February 2016 — First Down

June 2016 — Stealing Second 

October 2016 — Hat Trick

But before First Down is published, all three will have been written and read through with a notebook to keep the time line straight.

May 14, 2015

In my Head…

Filed under: Writer's thoughts — michelle sodaro @ 12:52 pm
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So it is officially 8 days until I click SEND on Broken Trust, and give the world the chance to meet Sam, my beautiful mess of an artist, Ben, my detail-oriented architect, and Ali, my eclectic music store owner (who gets even more attention in the sequel, Redeeming Trust, due out this fall).

My head right now reminds me of a high school student right before the musical or play was about to be performed. Like I am going through my work day and getting my to-do list tasks done, but mentally I am going over the things I need to do before it’s curtain time.

My characters are all over the place in my head. There is, of course the nervous energy of Ben, Sam and Ali…checking to make sure they “are ready for their closeup” and are ready to meet the world. Sam is nervous because she’s covered in paint splotches, Ben is making sure every detail is in place, and Ali is deciding what color to make her hair for opening night. their supporting cast is also milling around making sure they play their roles the best they can. (Officer Biceps is flexing…which is really just a little distracting).

In addition to the cast of Broken Trust having buckets of nervous energy there is, as always, the characters in my other novels anxiously awaiting the publication of Broken Trust because that creates some room on my always over-filled plate. (I apologize for the convoluted metaphor).

Even though I know the next project after Broken Trust will be Redeeming Trust and then the Lucky Charms series (First Down, Stealing Second, and Hat Trick), there is still the hovering anxiety of what will come NEXT. Because all of my projects know that while I am editing and revising, I need a project to be my writing project so that I can keep the cycle going.

So there is the feel of the characters in my other projects, all wanting to ask, but not wanting to distract me, but also exuding nervous energy to try to catch a glimpse of what will be revealed as next.
So much fun chaos in my head right now.

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