A Message From Z.L. Arkadie

A Sunday Publishing Update!


So Soul Mates goes to the editor on Wednesday. I’m almost finished writing the book. Today, after reading-through to certain point, I’m deleting about 10k words and starting where I left off yesterday, because the story told me the REAL direction it wants to go in. And I love it!

I’m going to admit that Tempting Fate and The Deception should’ve been one book.  Simply because Tempting Fate is basically the story of how Fate won’t let Paisley and Hercules forget each other. However, the Decetion is is the payoff where they heat up each other’s lives and the sheets. You can’t appreciate the story without reading them both. It all belongs together.  So after I get Soul Mates to the editor. I’m going to work on combining them.

But I don’t think I messed up the story as bad as read-through from book one to two suggests. Book two is solid. Again, book one and two must be combined.



For the past month, I have been reading and listening to a lot fiction, a lot of genres. And I have to tell you, I LOVED/LOVE writing the Valentines. Romantic suspense, violence, fighting, murder and mayhem, all that stuff is depressing. I won’t be able to write it long-term. I will Peter-out within twoyears. I’m writing what I want write.  I want to be sort of longwinded. I want to write everything. I don’t want to create cliche cardboard cut-out characters and situations. And after spending some time learning about my craft from other authors, I don’t have to be cliche. I just have to be consisent. Franky, the Christmases and Valentines aren’t THAT much different. Within those realms, I’m going to find what you like the best, and serve you more of it. So bear with me. 💕 I’ll get it write, and you’ll be llike, “Yes, another Z.L. release, serving me more of  what I love.”

My new self-care tactic is to not overload myself with tackling too much at once. Right now, my focus is solely on finishing Hercules Valentine and I, and then improving readibility. Then I’ll stare BLANK Valentine and I. The brother next book will be about is still a secret.



I’m in the process of fixing LOVE in the USA. I’ve solicited some help. Thanks Mom! 😘 All the sex and cursing has got to be cleaned up. The plot had some failures too. Frankly, I think the stories ended after Say You Love Her. And Vince Adam’s should’ve never done what he done. I should’ve written other characters love stories after that instead of dragging out the main characters’s story until they became utterly unrecognizable and started making stupid mistakes.

But I love those characters, that series. I’m not throwing them or it away. I’m fixing the series as soon as I can.

Regarding the Hesters. Sigh… I don’t know what to do with them yet. Give me some time.

And let’s not even talk about Parched. Maybe like Misty Black, its days have sadly come to an end. I was so different when I wrote those books. My belief system has changed. I don’t believe the world is full of doom and gloom or that humans are capable of screwing it up so badly that the future will be dystopian desertscapes full of bad people and destructive forces. I can write a whole textual analysis of why that kind of thinking and believing is so popular. But, I’m too busy.

I had to really give it some thought. If you’ve been with me for a while, then you know how difficult it was for me to write vampires. Blood sucking creatures??? How ominous. Sigh…  I mean, really, aren’t we good enough???? Geesh. I had a great idea about rewriting Parched. Changing the name of the series, keeping the characters and their powers, but redirecting the story down a different avenue.

However, that same feeling that made it so hard for me to start my first vampire series, reappears. I was chasing the money. I think if I would’ve kept at Parched, it would’ve worked! But, alas, I can’t. I stopped for a reason. No blood suckers. No, person with superhuman strength. No escpaing our own humanity. Let’s find the beauty in our own humanity instead.

I think that’s what I do. People who escape insurmountable circumstances to allow the beatuiful things about falling in love with a PARTNER change their lives and set them on the road to Happily Ever After. Sure hot sex is involved (FYI, I never write sex I haven’t experienced. I don’t guess at it.) but a parnter is more than sex, they’re a friend. Experience is how I know hot sex fizzles and a man tires of woman who has nothing going on but beauty and expectations. The big money in romance is about making shoving those square pegs into round holes. But I feel like if I do that, then I’m lending to an illness that permeates our society today. Sacred, pure masculinity doesn’t a man naturally violent. Toxic masculinity does though. Lots of popular romance is full of toxic masuclinity and young women with no depth other than beauty.

Not writing that.

Never writing that.

And give us ten to twenty years, romance readers won’t be reading that.

I’m staying above the curve.

But I learned recently, thanks to Alessandre Torre’s seminar that if I just do what I do, over and over, I’ll cull more readers.  And I’m ready to do that. Hey, I make a living at this, so enough of you like what I do to keep me going. And I know there are more of you out there. So, I’m going to try to make LOVE in the USA reflect my front list–the Christmases and Valentines. I think I can do it. And I think you’re going to like the series. My changes will allow me to keep writing in that series too! That’ll be fun! I had fun writing LOVE in the USA until I got off track. But now, I’m getting back on track!

Okay… This post has taken longer than I planned. I have a lot of work to do today. After Wedneday, I’ll take a mini-vacation. But now! Off to work I go!

Finishing Soul Mates!


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