They say there are no original ideas, but…

I stumbled across a television series this weekend called Orphan Black and ended up binge-watching all of Season 1.  The show airs on BBC America, and it’s – in a word – fantastic.  The show starts with a woman running into a look-alike at the train station. Just as the main character, Sarah, realizes she’s looking at herself, the other woman jumps in front of a train. Sarah steals the woman’s purse and impulsively takes over her life.  This leads to other doppelgangers!

As I was watching the show and becoming more and more engrossed, I kept having this vague sense of deja vu.  It wasn’t long before I realized that Orphan Black had a ton of similarities to my Triple X series. (duh!) When Sarah and Beth met, it was like Lexie and Roxie meeting for the first time. (Although neither of them jumped in front of a train!)  Then there was a scene where Alison, another look-alike, pretends to be Sarah.  It was similar to the scene from Maxie where the identical triplets pose as one another at the magic show. Then there’s the scene where Sarah jumps the bones of this impossibly hot guy. It’s a page right out of Roxie’s book where… Oh yeah, you haven’t read that yet.  ;-)

Anyway, in the television series the women look alike, but their styles are very different.  I’m not just talking about hair and clothes.  They have different lifestyles and priorities, but at the heart of it, they’re one unit.  They care about each other, and they’re all working together to get to the bottom of their mystery.  (Well, except for maybe Helena.  She’s nuts.)  Does any of that sound familiar?  Once again, it was my Triple X trilogy.

They say that there are no original ideas left anymore, and maybe the similarities between the television show and the books are an example of that.  Yet I still think there are countless ways to make ideas unique.  Orphan Black and my books might start out with the same basic premise — how would identical women react to one another and how could their lives intertwine?  After that, though, the ideas spiral off to very different quarters — and that’s what makes things exciting. Maybe we have to start out at the same place, but I think there are a gazillion original ideas left to be found.  How could there not be?

So I can’t wait to watch Season 2 of Orphan Black, and I hope you’re just as excited to read Roxie’s story.  It will be here soon.  Just one more week!

 

 

Excerpt from ROXIE

An Excerpt From: ROXIE
Triple X, Book 3

© Copyright KIMBERLY DEAN, 2014

Roxie’s heels clomped across the hardwood floor until she stood directly between the two of them. Thrusting out her empty coffee cup, she looked at him sternly. “Don’t try to charm my sisters.”

“I’m not trying, baby, I am charming.” He let one eyebrow lift, but freshened her cup anyway.

“They have boyfriends.”

Their gazes met in silent challenge, but there was something more in her eyes . . . a kind of fear . . .

Billy paused. He knew her well. To some, she might seem tough and rowdy, but there was an insecure side to her, too. Every foster care kid had one.

“I know which one is you, Roxie,” he said, for her ears only. He wouldn’t play on that fear, no matter what happened between them. “I’m not looking to upgrade.”

Her gaze dropped to her cup of coffee, but instead of drinking it, she ran her finger around the lip of the cup.

“Believe me, I know which one runs on high octane fuel,” he said softly.

That round-and-round motion hitched, and her gaze lifted. Her eyes were big and brown, and he saw how her pupils dilated. Desire set inside him like a racer wanting the checkered flag. That little romp last night hadn’t been nearly enough to keep him going. He’d been running on fumes for too long.

And last night had been different. It had just been . . . more.

In the wee hours of the darkness, she hadn’t been able to keep her emotions locked down so tight. The sex between them had always been hot, but the way they’d touched only hours ago? It had been more like in the beginning, when the need to connect had been overpowering.

“Want to go back upstairs and wake each other up properly?” he asked.

Her fingers tightened around her mug, and her teeth sunk into her lower lip. She leaned forward over the bar. She had him poised, holding his breath, but then she pulled back with her long hair swinging. “I can’t.”

She took a deep breath, and his gaze dropped to the clingy top she wore.

“You can. You really can.”

She glanced over her shoulder. Seeing they were being watched, she flicked a finger at the donut box, opening it. “I can’t leave my sisters,” she said as she plucked out a chocolate treat.

She left him feeling hungry as she walked back to the table, hips swaying.

Billy didn’t know if the growl that came out of him originated in his throat or in his belly. Following her lead, he grabbed a bear claw.

At least she hadn’t been running away this morning; she’d been running to something.

He looked over all the pretty dark heads.

Something important.

 

Roxie – Cover Reveal

KimberlyDean-Roxie72

Can a wild child ever really be tamed? Growing up in foster care has made Roxie Cannon tough, sassy, daring, and self-reliant. But being alone isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. She’s finally found family. Is it time she met her match?

Roxie should be on top of the world. She’s formed bonds with identical sisters she never knew she had, and she’s buying the bar she’s managed for years. The feisty brunette has everything she’s ever wanted. Almost. Two things still elude her: answers to why her family was split apart, and a man with whom she can share her passion. Seeing her sisters with their mates has made her aware she’s still the odd one out. Yet that all starts to change when a rough-and-tumble hottie from her past walks in the Ruckus’ door.

Billy knows trouble when he sees it. With her long legs, angel face, and pistol attitude, Roxie is commotion in motion. They’ve always set sparks off one another. This time, he’s promised himself he won’t get burned. Yet things get serious when he learns of Roxie’s quest to find her parents. Can he save his hot-blooded lover from being hurt? Or will the wounded little girl inside her never trust him again?

When Shows Meet Their Doom

The latest TV cancellations have been announced.  Most mean nothing to me, because I never watched the shows in the first place.  A few, however, I’m sad to see go.  For whatever reason, these shows didn’t catch on.  Was the quality of the writing or acting poor?  Were they not marketed well?  Were they put in the wrong time slots?  Was the concept unappealing from the start?

Books are a lot like TV shows.  Writers can write the best book ever, but sometimes it just doesn’t catch on with readers.  Authors are constantly trying to find the right cover, the right release schedule, the best way to connect with readers, and whatever other tricks will help.  It’s a black art, really, and it drives us crazy!

Here are the two shows I’ll miss and what I think went wrong:

1)  Believe
I was really intrigued by this show when it came out.  It’s about a little girl with psychic abilities.  Different factions are after her, and one of them breaks a man out of prison and assigns him to protect her.  Little does he know that he’s her dad.

What I liked –  The show was different than pretty much everything else out there.  I loved, loved, loved the relationship between Bo and Tate.  They had the classic Paper Moon, Ryan and Tatum O’Neal dynamic.  It was the best thing about this show.  Tate was great.  He was hardened, suspicious of both sides, and protective.  He’d make a great bad boy hero in a romance novel.

What didn’t work — Pretty much everything else.  Milton was constantly saying, “I can protect you.”  From the start, everything he touched was bungled, and he’s a researcher.  How would he know how to get off the grid?  Orchestra had way too much power.  Could an organization really develop a machine that can detect the use of psychic ability anywhere in the country?  Uh, not so believable.  Bo’s powers also pushed the limits.  Was there anything she couldn’t do?  She could read people’s minds, sense the future, and move objects.  Everything was frenetic.  The characters spent all their time running, and the slower spots were all about Bo using her powers for good.  It was cute at the beginning, but near the end it became a bit cloying.

2)  Almost Human

Okay, this one hurts.  The show was set in the future where all policemen are assigned an android partner.  A tough cop comes back from a bad case that left him in a coma for several years.  He blames the android assigned to him then, but is assigned a more human-like partner this time.  This android has been programmed with emotions.

What I liked — Everything.  This show was slick-looking.  I liked that the future was portrayed as mainly advances in technology, rather than giving the characters funny clothes and weird hairstyles.  It maintained a somewhat gritty feel.  The acting was top-notch.  I loved the bromance between the cop and the android, and the humor would sometimes make me laugh out loud.  I liked the chemistry between John and fellow detective, Valerie.  Again, good romance material there.

What didn’t work — Here ya go.  This one’s a great example.  I’m scratching my head trying to come up with the answer.  Was Monday night the wrong night for this show?  Was the first season run too short for viewers to find it?  Are there not enough science fiction fans out there to make a show like this work?  Or have science fiction fans cut the cord and gone to streaming services?  Then there’s always the Fox factor.  Fox is known for cutting great shows before they can find their niche.  Firefly, anyone?  Publishers have been known to make the same mistake.

So what shows will you be missing or think deserved cancellation?  And why?  I’m interested to hear.

The Brain is a Funny Thing

brainThe brain is a funny thing – and I’d dare say that writers’ brains are stranger than most.  Usually I’m very good at keeping my projects separated.  Currently, I’m finishing up one and planning on quickly moving on to the next.  Right now, I’m finishing up edits.  My brain is supposed to be in a very analytical place.  Are all the loose threads tied up?  Can I add some foreshadowing here or there?  It’s like finishing up a puzzle, and my brain has been performing well.

Except when it starts to have a mind of its own.

I know what my next book’s about, and I have a very high level story arc in mind.  I’ve tried for several weeks to start breaking down the plot into more definable pieces, but it wouldn’t break.  I’ve written up some character bios.  They’re fine, but I didn’t really feel like I knew the hero or heroine.

Until the past few days.

Suddenly my analytical brain is jumping into the creative phase, which is good.  I stopped pushing and it finally started going there on its own.  It’s been polite and hasn’t interfered with the clean up work for the current work-in-progress.  What’s rude is that it’s doing this at 4:00 in the morning!

Agg!  The past three days in a row, I’ve woken up with scenes in my head.  Don’t ask me why or how.  I don’t know.  But the characters have suddenly found their voices.  The story is starting to flesh out.  It’s awesome.  It’s organic.

And it’s 4:00 AM!

I need to jump into this new project soon so the story will feel free to come to me at more convenient times of the day.  I promise you, book, you will be my main focus very, very soon.

But right now, please.  I need some sleep.

Spring Fever

springSpring is finally arriving… I think… and it’s become very difficult to write.  Like everyone else, I want to get outside to work on the yard and plant some flowers.  It’s really difficult to sit behind a keyboard and stare out the window to see sunshine and everything greening up.  Fortunately/unfortunately, it’s been a rainy week.  I’m finishing some things up and getting ready to start something new.  Basically, I’m doing spring cleaning and that’s never fun, but it’s a must.

I’m behind on so many things, including my spring newsletter, but I hope to catch up soon.  Scratch that.  I will catch up soon.  If you haven’t signed up for my newsletter, now’s the perfect time to do so.  I should have lots to share.

Private Dancer wins!

Private Dancer2014_EBook_WINNER-smGreat news!  Private Dancer won the Erotic division of EPIC’s 2014 EBook competition.  EPIC is the Electronic Publishing Industry Coalition, and their competition if open to all published ebooks.  EPIC has been “the Voice of ePublishing since 1998.”

Thank you very much for the award, EPIC.