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A Little Down Time with Samantha Grace

Last week I turned in the second book to my new series, Rival Rogues, and I'm just now hitting that sweet spot where I can finally sit back and relax for a bit. Every time I finish a book, it takes me a few days to shake the sense I should be writing instead of goofing around. (Does anyone remember feeling that way after finals in school?) As soon as reality sets in that the book is really finished, all those things on my to-do list start screaming for me to pay attention to them. Groceries, laundry, errands, emails to answer, calls to return, appointments I've been avoiding... And then once I've whittled down the list, blessed freedom comes. I know it's short-lived, because soon there will be revisions to make, a blogging tour, and another book to write, but I've learned to appreciate this time and use it to recharge.

Here are some of the ways I've been enjoying my time off:

1) Playing "Just Dance 4" on the Wii with my daughter. We had a blast last night doing the battle rounds. And dancing to "Time Warp" from Rocky Horror Picture Show was so much fun. It was great to just be silly and laugh for a while.

2) Organizing my office. I know that probably doesn't sound like much fun, but I love jobs I can finish is a fairly short amount of time and start seeing results immediately. I also like finding things that remind me of the past. I found a picture of my son from fourth grade dressed as Darth Vader for Halloween, and it reminded me of the Darth Vader cake I made for his birthday party that year. I made a cake in a dome shaped bowl and attached the mask to it so it looked like Darth Vader's head on a platter. Then we hummed the Darth Vader march theme as I carried in the cake instead of singing happy birthday. 

3) Watching "The Walking Dead" with my son. We always get a kick out of KFC being the sponsor. There will be a gross scene, then right after that there will be an announcement "Sponsored by KFC". I know it's a popular show, but I wouldn't think it would boost fried chicken sales. Of course, I could be wrong. 

4) Reading. I have so many books on my Kindle, not to mention two full bookcases of books I haven't had time to crack open. It has been nice to read in bed at night without it triggering an anxiety attack. Only two more weeks until my deadline and I have twenty-five thousand words to go. Can't breathe

5) Catching a matinee at the cinema. My daughter and I saw "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2" today. It was a cute movie, and we both enjoyed it.

This week I'm getting a haircut. I also want to schedule a massage, and I had planned on a pedicure, but I jammed my toe Friday so that's going to have to wait. 

How do you like to spend your free time?  

Just in case you're curious, here's what I have coming in January!

From the betting book at Brooks Gentleman’s Club:
Wager: £2,000 that Lord Ellis will throw the first punch when he discovers Lord Thorne is wooing a certain duke’s sister.

All bets are off when the game is love
Lady Gabrielle is thrilled when she learns Anthony Keaton, Earl of Ellis, wants to ask for her hand in marriage. She’s not so pleased when he then leaves the country and four months pass without a word. Clearly, the scoundrel has changed his mind and is too cowardly to tell her. There’s nothing to do but go back on the marriage mart…

When Anthony returns to Town and finds his ultimate rival has set sights on Gabby, his continual battle of one-upmanship with Sebastian Thorne ceases to be a game. Anthony is determined to win back the woman who holds his heart--but he’s not expecting Gabby herself to up the stakes…

Now available on NetGalley. 


  1. I just finished Jaguar Hunt edits, and had to take a break before reading it one final time all the way through. I had to catch up on critique partner's chapters, working on setting up a sale on one of my Highland historicals, listened to audiobooks I had to approve revisions on and revise the synopsis for JH. Then it's back to reading JH one more time to turn it in today. Then it's back to A Highland Wolf Christmas that I'm no behind on with word count... :)

  2. Terry,
    It doesn't sound like you have any down time in the near future. I hope you get to take a break soon. You deserve a little you time. :)

  3. At the moment, my down time consists of reading Lady Amelia's Mess and a Half. Unfortunately, with all the other stuff I've been doing to flair up my carpal tunnel syndrome, I have a hard time holding a book for very long. Therefore my down times are fairly short-lived. Enjoy yours!

  4. Thank you, Cheryl! And how sweet and cool that you're reading my book. :)

    I can't imagine how frustrating it must be to deal with carpal tunnel syndrome with being a writer. I have occasional aches and pains that make it hard to sit for long, which is not very conducive to writing. Sending healing thoughts your way.

  5. I seriously do not have any free time. Even when I finish a book, my deadlines are so tight, I have to start the next one right away. I don't even watch TV or go to the movies. I do read, but I feel almost like I have to. I mean, how can I claim to be a writer and not read? I'm hoping December brings me some free time. Then maybe I'll take your suggestions for fun activities.

  6. I get down time in little bits and pieces but I have a very full schedule of deadlines until next August...and then if things go right maybe another set of new contracts to put more deadlines on the calendar. However, I love your idea of a little pampering once in a while...that would sure be something to look forward to!

  7. Shana & Carolyn,
    My breaks are very short but jammed packed. LOL

    I hope you both get some free time to pamper yourselves soon. :)

  8. Enjoy your downtime Samantha! I read, and read and read. There is no such thing as very much down time for me lol. @Cheryl Brooks look into something called a thumbthing, our customers with carpul tunnel love the device in the store. It takes pressure off when holding a book.

  9. Congratulations on getting another book finished, it's such an accomplishment, we all deserve some down time when we're done. I like your ideas. :}

  10. Thank you, Misty! I'm going to check out the Thumbthing, even though I don't need it. I bet some of my patients I work with in my other job would like to know about it.

  11. Ooh...I will have to look for the thumbthing as well...of course that doesn't help with the typing, but every little bit helps! Sounds like you a just as busy 'relaxing' as you are when you are writing, lol. Enjoy! I don't go to the movies often but I must confess that I am thinking about going to see Ender's Game when it is out since I loved the series so much.

  12. Congrats on getting book two finished and I hope you are enjoying your down time.

    Being a mom to four boys means there is little down time for me, but when I do get it I like to read and also nap. Pretty boring, I know.

    I am looking forward to the new series and am so glad Lady Gabrielle gets her own story. I was wondering if she would, since she was mentioned so much in the other series.


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