Pass the Baton Blog Hop

My friend, fellow author, Silver James, invited me to participate in the Pass the Baton Blog Hop. Silver is a gifted author who writes in the paranormal and contemporary romance genres, among others. Silver was just recently contracted by Harlequin Desire…how awesome is that??? You can learn more about Silver here:

And, guess what???? Silver just became a grandmother for the first time. Her beautiful grandson, Liam, was born March 23…congrats to Silver and her daughter, Clary. (Who is also my cover artist. Hope childbirth doesn’t interfere with the progress of my latest cover… Just kidding! 😉 Sort of.)

I was asked to answer questions about my latest Work in Process. (I actually had a bit of a crisis related to this MS. Many of you have heard my story of woe, but I’m telling it again. My flash drive became corrupted, and I lost several documents, including this one with all of the work I’d done on it since I picked it back up a few weeks ago, after putting it aside about four years ago. I have a team of geeks trying to recover the lost docs, but we’re not sure this will be one they can recover…fingers crossed!)

Anyway, enough whining and back to the post. The questions I was asked to answer are…

What am I working on?

A suspense/thriller novel titled Without Mercy. Here is a rough blurb:

A normal work day for bank employee and single mom, Chyna Beckett, turns into tragedy when the bank is robbed and her boss is murdered in front of her. But the horror doesn’t end there. Chyna discovers that, what appeared to be a random robbery is actually much more. The criminals targeted that specific bank for one reason—because of Chyna.

She is soon launched into a nightmare where mercenaries hold her and her daughter hostage in their normal lives. Each time Chyna makes a wrong move, someone dies. As Chyna fights to protect her daughter, pieces of the puzzle start to click into place. She learns the takeover is connected to her daughters’ father, Aidan. But how is that possible? Aidan died in the jungle before Emma was born.

As the lives of the people Chyna loves are jeopardized, she realizes she must take action. But she has no idea where to turn–and time is running out. But then, a startling truth is revealed, and Chyna realizes that the only person who can help her and her child might be a ghost from the past.

How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Because it’s mine, my voice, my creation. It’s also different in that, while it has a pretty strong romantic storyline, that doesn’t come into play until the book is more than half over. That makes the lines between straight suspense and romantic suspense a little blurred, but I had to relay the story as it came to me. So, it is what it is, whatever that might be.

Why do I write what I do?
Because I have to. Whenever a story starts to pull at me, I have no choice but to write it. I think that paranormal and suspense stories pull at me most often, because those are the kind that interest me. I try to write what I would love to read. (I think that’s a pretty standard response from most authors)

How does your writing process work?
Ha! It doesn’t! Uhm, okay, seriously, I suppose it starts with an idea. I’m not one of those character-driven writers who has characters come visit them, then they create a story for that character. Once an idea comes to me, I consider who would be the most interesting people to put in that situation, who would be the worst person for something like this to happen to. Then, I get to know that character, I outline the story, I make a list of scene notes, I write really, really crappy drafts of those scenes, then I go back through and fix them. I make as many passes through the story as I need to in order to be satisfied. During one of those passes, my critique partners help me out. I would keep revising over and over, so at some point, I have to just decide the story is complete and let it go. (And never, EVER, read it again!)


Two lovely ladies were kind enough to allow me to pass the baton to them, and their blogs will be up next Monday, March 31st. Here is a little about them…

Marilyn Baron is so prolific, it makes me ill…not really, I’m happy for her, but completely jealous of how quickly she churns out books. And, they’re really good ones too! I’m currently reading Sixth Sense, which is a page turner. But, I have several other of her books in my TBR pile, because she writes about topics I find fascinating. I was fortunate enough to meet Marilyn in person last July at the RWA conference in Atlanta. She’s terrific!

Mini bio: Marilyn Baron, a public relations consultant in Atlanta, writes humorous women’s fiction, romantic thrillers/suspense, historicals and paranormal for The Wild Rose Press and has won writing awards in Single Title, Suspense Romance and Paranormal/Fantasy Romance.

Check out Marilyn’s novel by clicking on the title: Under the Moon Gate


Marilyn’s Baton Post next week will be featured on The Beach Read Authors blog:

Marilyn’s Web site:


My other baton author is Monique DeVere. Although I have never met Monique face to face (she’s in the U.K. for cripe’s sake!), I love, love, love her. She is a fantastic writer and such a wonderful friend. She is always there to lend a helping hand—she volunteered to help me moderate our author promo loop, Authors Helping Authors, (along with the lovely R.T. Wolfe), and she critiqued/edited my short story, End of Lonely Street in a mere 24 hour period, and she did an awesome job. Oh, yeah, and she’s a fantastic writer! She writes stories with strong passion and emotion, along with a twist of humor. My favorite of her stories so far is Zach’s Rebound Girl. LOVE it!!!

Mini bio: Monique DeVere is an author of smexy romantic comedy and Christian supernatural fiction. She is also a screenwriter and is currently working on her latest script. Monique resides in the UK.

Check out Monique’s novel by clicking on the title: Zach’s Rebound Girl

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Purchase link:


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11 responses to “Pass the Baton Blog Hop

  1. ARGGHHHH on the flash drive. Dropbox has been my savior several times and I can work from desktop OR laptop. Love your stuff, Alicia, and yes, Clary will get right on that cover. 😉 She’s feeling pretty good and Jeremy’s got paternity leave so once they get settled at home, she should have time to catch up. If not, I’ll kidnap the kid and crack the whip. 😀

    Thanks for accepting the baton!


    • No swinging whips around a newborn!
      I feel your pain on the “cr”ash drive…do I ever.


    • Yes, I’ve been checking out Dropbox, but I think I’m a little confused on how to make sure a document downloads vs a PDF opening, but I am learning! I will definitely have some kind of back up in place soon. Haha, thanks for having my back on the cover. But maybe she should rest and enjoy being a momma for a while before we put her back to work. 🙂 Since I lost the manuscript, I am not in a huge rush for the cover! UGH…


      • If you want a .doc or .docx to work in, simply save it to Dropbox in that form. I keep my Scrivener backup file on Dropbox plus all my “working” Word .docs. Trust me, if I can figure it out, you can! We all know how technologically challenged I am! LOLOL


  2. moniquedevere

    I love you too, Alicia! 😀 Hello, Silver 🙂

    My heart still aches for you, Alicia. I only lost one doc and it was painful, I can’t imagine how devastating several docs must be. Dropbox sounds like something I want to look into. I was sure using flashdrives would be the wise choice–not anymore…! I like your free-spirited approach to writing. I find it impossible to move on until I get the scene just right. Boy, would I love to have the ability to write an entire draft before editing, it would save me some hair-pulling days, I’m sure. I hope you retrieve Without Mercy so you can finish the story because it sounds like a great read! 🙂


    • Thanks for the sympathy, Monique. I don’t think I’d ever finish a story if I had to make sure a scene was perfect before moving on. I appreciate the kind words, I hope you like Without Mercy when I eventually finish it. Even if they can’t retrieve it, I have an old version, and I will revise it all over again. But it won’t be as good as what I’ve already done.


  3. Such fun to read about your writing side, Alicia. I love the fact that YOU love paranormal suspense, since that is what I’m writing now myself. I’m still hoping for “mercy” with your lost ms. This pass the baton idea is awesome…I’d love to participate.


    • I’m glad you enjoyed it, Susan. Yes, I do love paranormal suspense. And, I love your writing! 🙂 I wish I’d had you participate in the Pass the Baton hop. It’s going around, so I’m sure you will find one to join. I’ll keep an ear out. Thanks for stopping by!


  4. Diane Burton

    Congrats to Silver on her new grandchild. What a treat. Thanks, Alicia, for sharing your writing style. Everybody is different. Glad you found what works for you. Good luck on retrieving that manuscript.


    • Yes, everyone is different, and actually, my writing process changes just a little with each MS. You would think after twenty some odd stories, I could settle on a tried and true method, wouldn’t you? Thanks for the good luck wish, I’ll need it!


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