Guest Post–Writing Life by Diane Burton

For most authors, writing is a way of life. We write every day. It’s our job and our passion. We write when we’re in the zone and when each word is like slogging through a swamp. Being in the zone is much more fun. 😊 Whether writing content for blogs, giving advice and “atta girls” on Facebook, or reviews of books we’ve read, we’re writing.

Procrastination is the writer’s worst enemy. Not writer’s block, procrastination. Avoidance. Not opening the file. Not reading what we’ve written.

I’ve never stared at a blank screen. A new story is so exciting. The idea has been swirling around my subconscious for days, weeks even. The excitement of a new story, new characters, new situations, maybe even a new world makes my fingers jitter for joy. Then, the story stalls. I written myself into a corner and don’t know how to get out of it. Or, a character isn’t behaving, and I don’t know what to do about her/him.

And that’s when procrastination sets in. Oh, I know what to do. Open the d@nm file. Do I? Nope. I fold clothes (the ones that have been wrinkling in the clothes basket for a week), I work on family finances, I organize my closet, I play solitaire or mah jong on the computer, I binge watch Netflix or Acorn TV. I do anything except open the file and read what I’ve written. I know that will get me back on track.

So much for writing every day.

Today, I’m going to open that file and write 500 words. Oh, wait. The flowers in front need weeding.

Every weekend, Diane shares snippets from The Pilot (An Outer Rim Novel) with the Weekend Writing Warriors on her blog. The Pilot is a science fiction romance and the first book in her Outer Rim series, featuring strong women on the frontier of space.

BLURB

There’s no place like home and he stole hers.

Life on the frontier of space is hard enough so when pirates stole Celara d’Enfaden’s cargo, she vowed not to be tricked again. Determined to make an example out of indie pilots who disobey orders, Coalition Administrator Trevarr Jovano impounds Celara’s starship and cargo. If he backs down, he’ll lose respect. If she can’t deliver her cargo, she’ll default on her loan and lose her only home—her ship. More important than her ship, though, is her brother. To rescue him from a galactic gangster, she’ll even work with Jovano who is bent on avenging his wife’s murder.

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EXCERPT

“Cargo transport, this is Coalition Security. Are you in need of assistance?

Celara d’Enfaden raced up the vertical ladder from the hold. She leapt across a corner of the open hole in the cabin floor. Reaching under the cabinet above the aft bunk, she hit the switches that closed the hatch and started the exhaust fan. Finally, she whipped off her protective mask only to gag at the residual stench from the cargo. She took one look at the perma-film viewscreen across the bow of her starship and her heart stopped.

A Volpian cruiser nearly filled the screen. After the first hail in Universal, the deep male voice repeated the offer in different languages, even Menacan, Celera’s first language.

“Arjay,” she called. “We’ve got company.”

Her boots clattered on the floor’s metal plating as she raced to the cockpit. She vaulted over the arm of the pilot’s chair, narrowly avoiding her copilot as he crawled out from under the instrument panel.

She hit switches to power up the sublights. It would take time to bring all systems back online—time they didn’t have. “Sure hope you fixed that accelerator.”

“It is only a temporary measure.”

As if they had all the time in the galaxy, Arjay straightened his blond hair back into its normal perfectly-coifed appearance before brushing dust from the viridian-green uniform favored by space crews in the Central District. Ever fastidious, he refused to wear the roomy dun-colored shirt and trousers of a true indie, like she did.

“Quit primping and get us out of here.”

He settled into the seat next to her. “We are leaving? They offered to help us.”

“Remember what happened last time?” Her fingers flew across the instrument panel’s touchpads.

Arjay’s fingers flew faster. “Are they pirates?”

“Of course. Where in Lexol’s Fire did they come from? And why didn’t the proximity alarm go off?”

“Without further investigation, I would not know.” He didn’t stop his computations. “Volpian cruisers do not have shrouding capabilities. However, the ship appears new. It may be an experimental model.”

A siren pierced the small cabin. “About time,” she muttered before switching off the alarm.

Arjay brought the primary energizing coil online. Not for the first time she thanked the Spirits he was her copilot. He didn’t need to be told what to do. That made up for his primping.

“Cargo transport. I repeat, this is Coalition Security. Identify yourself.” The pirate’s voice carried the ring of authority.

For a half sec, she had misgivings. What if they were Coalition Security? If she didn’t obey, she would be in deep horse pucky. But she’d been tricked before by pirates claiming to be Coalition Security. No way were they getting her cargo. If that happened, she would be in even deeper trouble. She’d gone into serious debt to replace the cargo the first pirates stole. If she lost this load, she would lose more than her investment. Her starship was the collateral securing her loan.

Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. Besides writing science fiction romance, she writes romantic suspense, and cozy mysteries. Diane and her husband live in West Michigan, close to their two children and five grandchildren.

For more info and excerpts from her books, visit Diane’s website: http://www.dianeburton.com

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