Monday, July 8, 2013

Don't Quit Your Day Job

I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was four years old. But it probably wasn’t until high school, and I actually started working, that I wanted to write fulltime. The idea of spending every day with my characters and devoting my time to my passion, oppose to boring meetings and office politics, sounds like a dream come true. But at least, for right now, I can’t afford to do that.

But I realized lately I don’t give enough credit to my day job for what it does for my writing. During my day job I get to meet new people and hear their stories, which can result in new character traits or backstories to add to my work. I get to experience new places, that can weave their way into my stories.

Without my day job and the company’s regional meeting, I probably never would have written my newest release, Working for Him, that is part of Total-e-Bound’s newest anthology Tied to the Billionaire.

During my day job’s company meeting this year, I was listening to some presentation or another, not really focusing on the actual activity but on the friends I planned to meet up with that night. One of the best parts of these meetings for me was getting to see and spending time with my work friends that had been moved to different area of the region that didn’t allow them to come to the office often. After the day’s activities, we would meet up at the bar, catch up and have a great time.

Then my mind started to wonder, thinking about all the other people at the meeting and who they might be excited to meet up with, could it be friends or even possibly a lover. Could they want to meet up to enjoy each other’s company or to explore areas of their life they didn’t feel free to experiment with the rest of the year.  From this the idea for Working for Him was born.

We’ll I’m not ready to give up on my dreams of writing fulltime any time soon, I can at least appreciate all that my day job has to offer, and the ideas and story lines it inspires. At least until I can afford to live off my writing alone.

Here’s a little snippet from my next release, available for preorder now with Total-e-Bound Publishing.

“Merlot, please,” Serena ordered from the bartender, handing him the single paper ticket parcelled out so no one got drunk on the company dime. From the animated conversations around her, a few had already done so at their own expense at the hotel bar.

The Vertical Aeronautics annual all-people meeting had got off to the same start as last year, reminding Serena why she’d chosen to become an engineer. She’d much rather spend the day with gears and equations than people. Plus it was the closest she could get to flying, due to her horrible vision and flat feet.

Subtly, she looked down at her watch, trying to gauge how much longer she had to stand around the banquet hall and make nice with the other employees. The day had already been a long one, and the night continued to drone on. All she wanted to do was get out of this uncomfortable suit and too-tight shoes and relax for what remained of the evening.

“Ms Carter, how are you doing tonight?”

Serena turned and smiled at the man who’d slid up to the bar beside her, even though her cheeks were already tired from so many forced smiles today. “I’m doing well, Larry, how are you?”

He nodded. “Good, good.” He smiled at the bartender and ordered a whiskey sour. “Though my department didn’t perform quite as well as yours did last year.”

Serena nodded. “Thank you. We were very lucky.”

Luck had nothing to do with it. It was damn hard work to keep her staff motivated, most of them still begrudging that she’d got the promotion to vice president over many of the more senior team members. But she’d learned long ago that modesty worked better at these work functions than the truth.

“I hope we’re so lucky next year.”

Serena smiled and took another sip of her drink. Sure he did. But that would require him to get off his ass and spend less time between his secretary’s legs. “I hope so, too.”

“How are you liking the conference this year?” Larry continued talking, and Serena fought back a groan at being forced to continue with such pleasantries. How does he not get the hint? “The food’s not as good as last year, but I’m enjoying the location. Vegas is a fun time.”

She smiled, wondering exactly what kind of good time he was having in Vegas. “It’s nice to travel somewhere warmer this time of year, but Vegas isn’t my kind of town. Too much activity, too many lights.” Too many co-workers.

“You just haven’t seen the city yet. Let me show you around, give you a tour of the casinos.” Larry moved a fraction closer to her along the bar, and against her will the corners of her mouth drooped into a frown. “Play a few games of craps, and you’ll be singing a different tune in no time.”

“I’m not much of a gambler.” Serena tried her best to ease back without showing it. Maybe the stink of liquor on his breath will help with his perceptions.

“We’ll play slots then. That’s not really gambling.” As he spoke, Larry’s eyes drifted down to her chest. He was far from the first to sneak such a peek today. Even beneath her conservative blouse and knee-length skirt, she still received quite a bit of attention from her male colleagues. Maybe because they came into contact with so few other women in the rest of their lives.

“Good to see someone’s enjoying the bar.”

Serena looked over to her side, where the dark husky voice had emanated from. Richard Barrett stood beside her with his own pleasant forced smile. He looked every bit the powerful playboy billionaire in his perfectly tailored black suit. He’d left the top two buttons of his shirt undone, allowing his collar to gape a bit and display a hard chest and thick dark hair. Serena’s mouth watered at the small peek.

The kid behind the bar didn’t need to know he was the CEO to realise this man was powerful—everything about him portrayed it. His hard, muscular body, his stance, the look in his eye. The bartender didn’t even ask him for one of the stupid drink tickets, he just filled the glass quickly and handed it over.

“Mr Barrett.” Larry immediately snapped to attention, standing a bit straighter and shifting his eyes away from her breasts.

“Mr Thompson.” He nodded to the man. “Ms Carter.” He nodded towards her, a slight curve in his lips as he said her name. He stared back at them with those piercing dark eyes that could make even the most seasoned businessman sign over his company, home and wife if Richard Barrett asked for it.

“Are you enjoying the meeting?”

“Very much, sir,” she responded, a little too quickly.

“Yes, the location is great,” Larry continued, filling in the awkward gap. “I was just telling Ms Carter, since we’re in Vegas, she should at least play a few slots and have a little bit of fun.”

Mr Barrett shifted his gaze to her, and her heart picked up speed. There was something about this man, something about the power and the determination in his eyes, that always called to a very deep part of her, a part she kept hidden from the rest of the world. The submissive part of her.

Pinned beneath his laser stare, unable to hide any of herself from him, Serena shifted uncomfortably. Her stomach fluttered and she pressed her thighs together in the hopes of keeping the throb between her legs at bay. The hum had her panties wet and the impulse to press her face into his chest and breathe in his musky male smell sounding like a great idea, even in front of the entire company.

“What do you think, Ms Carter? Are you inclined to play the slots?”

She looked up at him, blinking through her lashes. “No, Mr Barrett. That’s not the kind of play I enjoy."


Tina Donahue said...

Wow - this sounds like my kind of book, Willa - and I absolutely ADORE the cover. :)

Like you, I gravitated toward writing early. It's like breathing. A writer just has to do it.

Willa Edwards said...

Thanks Tina. The cover is definitely smoking. I love TEB's covers.

I've always wanted to be a writer, but to this day I don't remember where and why I came up with the idea. Maybe you're right. It was just in me from birth.

I've contemplated giving it up for a few reason throughout the years, but never made it more than a few days without sitting down to write again. I can't help myself. Its just a part of me. I don't know that I could ever stop.