The Return To Major Plotting – “Steal With A Kiss” A Parched Novel

So, it’s finally bed time for me.

I woke up at 10:00AM, ate something and then tortured myself with a Jillian Michael’s DVD. So far, 3 weeks, 5 days a week with Jillian and the results are REMARKABLE. It’s scary seeing your body do what you thought you wanted it to do. I’m watching it because I don’t want to get really skinny. That’s not hot. But I’m 3 weeks away from taking it down from 5 days a week to 3 days a week. Anyway. That’s how I’ve been starting my work week. 

So, I’ve been writing just about all day long. I can’t wait until I’m able to take another vacation. I have no idea where I’m going to go next. Truthfully, I love US travel. I love our cities. I was thinking about high-tailing back to the opposite coast for a week to do research for another story. I can use Wyndham’s if I go to DC. I would have to get a hotel room if I go to Chicago. I was also thinking about taking my nephews to NOLA–just to get them immersed in a culture that’s so different than their own.


That was  a crazy, need to go to bed, early morning/late night/want more tea but it’s too late, digression.

What I wanted to say is… I’m writing this book and I feel like I’m back in school or something. That’s it how goes when I’m writing a Parched novel. There’s so much plotting involved in Paranormal Romance–I’m not complaining but it’s very difficult to write. You can’t screw around with PNR! The story has to steadily jab and move, jab and move. 

You have to remember every little detail and hope you don’t leave any of them hanging. In plotting you build on the details. I had a friend visit me a few weeks ago and we watched the film Limitless, which I had saved on my DVR (I’m going to buy the film for my own collection after this). Anyway, I told her I’ve watched the film too many times to count because it’s over-plotted, which makes it a great text for learning how to plot. 

I kind of think over-plotting is easy to do but plotting just enough–that’s hard. 


So now my brain has smoke snaking from it. And here’s my regime (for lack of a better word – remember – brain, smoke…). Before I right the first word of the story, I start to outline. But I don’t complete it because I don’t want to lose the essence of the part of the story I just planned. I may outline up to the first major plot point, crafting those beats that get me there.

Then I write.

And usually, it doesn’t go as planned because creativity takes over and kicks things up a notch. 

Then, I’m back to outlining, planning the story to the next two or three or four beats. Then it’s back to the main text. And each time, I go from outline to main text, the story takes a turn I didn’t plan but essentially finds its roots in the outline.


Yeah… So tonight the story took a wonderful turn from the outline and I’m happy. No. It took the BEST turn. I’m ECSTATIC! It all came together at the right time. I’m at 18k words. Zill and Vayle have an idea of what they’re NOT looking for and the details that I’ve planted are SOLID. They’re going to add up. Sighhh… And you see a little of Chex and Adore in the first part of the book. Clarity’s always a presence. And remember, this is Zill and Vayle’s first dance in the real world alone, together… 

Basically, I cleared that hurdle like a champion.


Ah, the exhilaration of major plotting, baby! 🙂

I love this.

Good Night.


Much Love.



  • victoriawarren

    Hey Z,
    I wish I was as motivated as you right now!! You go girl! For some reason, I just can’t get in the groove. Congrats on getting more fit though. And we’ve had this conversation before, but Jillian, well, she is definitely an butt kicker! I am trying to get into Zumba right now. Honestly, it’s great fun, but like I said, I am having motivation issues. Hmmm. I really have to, (get motivated) because I am supposed to teach a freaking class in a month!!! What the hell was I thinking?!?!? Procrastinate much? Me, never! HAHA!

    I just have to say, you are an awesome Auntie!! Your nephews will love wherever you take them. And as always, its so nice to hear your writing is going well!! Score one for Z!!

    More happy writing to you Z!

    Talk to ya later,

    • Z.L Arkadie

      Dresses motivate me. LOL!!!
      I know that sounds INSANE but it’s true. Like last night before going to bed I tried on two dresses. I tried on three dresses the night before. I won’t try on any tonight, I think… 😉

      But you know, Vic, don’t pressure yourself. You have a very active life in general. You’re teaching a Zumba class??? How fun! I think teaching a exercise class is harder than it looks, so kudos to you! And you’ll make the perfect instructor because you’re selfless. Gosh, I hate it when you get an insecure instructor who wants to compete with the class… Like, really? I think the BEST crop of instructors I ever had was at Breathe Right Yoga in Seattle. They were Prime. I would SOOOO take your class! So good luck! Oh–You should blog about the experience!

      And ahhh… Thanks! Yeah, my nephews make me smile every time think about them or look at them. They are the best.

      Abbia un buon weekend!
      (Have a good weekend!)


    • victoriawarren

      Maybe I should start trying on dresses before bed!! Only, I only have a few. I would be trying on the same dresses all the time. LOL But I do definitely like to feel pretty. That helps to feel good in your clothes. I just have to get it in my head and not give myself any excuses. You know what they say about excuses.

      I think that the Zumba thing may have been something that I did not fully appreciate when I went into it. My friend made it sound so easy. But in reality there IS a lot of work that does go into it. You cant just keep doing the same routine over and over again. People get bored. So between working the 4-12 hour days and instructing two classes a week and then working out more on top of that, AND coming up with new routines over the weekend, it will probably prove to be more than I bargained for. That doesn’t include spending time at home with my family. But I will try, and I never go down without a fight. So… I may end up a better student than teacher. Which, is not surprising to me.
      When and if I do get into the groove of things, I will put something on Youtube. Then you CAN take class with me. 😉 LOVE Yoga by the way. But, there aren’t any good classes around here, in the middle of nowhere. Hmmm. LOL I do have a habit of getting in over my head occasionally. =/

      Thanks for the encouragement, and yes, I think I will blog about it.

      You have a good weekend as well,

    • Z.L Arkadie

      You definitely need more hours in one day, like six more! OMG. That’s a hefty schedule.

      I will definitely take your Youtube Zumba classes! That would be so FUN!!! 🙂 Especially since the faster/harder I dance the more uncoordinated I become. LOL!

      Oh, and the best way to see how far over your head you’ve gotten yourself is to blog about it! LOL!

      Talk soon! And remember to relax a little! 🙂