Today I’m celebrating the release of Cherish, the novella-length sequel to Covet. I want to thank everyone who reached out to me over the past year, asking if I might consider writing a sequel to the story. It’s because of you that I finally decided to continue the story from Daniel’s, and his ex-wife Jessie’s, point of view.
Here are the places you can find Cherish:
(Major Covet spoilers from this point forward).
For the longest time, I had no plans to write a sequel. But something happened during the revision of Covet which left the door wide open for me to explore a particular storyline. I didn’t know at the time how grateful I would be for that.
The ending in the published version of Covet is different than in the earlier drafts because in those drafts, Daniel did not survive being shot in the line of duty. I wrote funeral and cemetery scenes and was pretty much a bawling mess during the whole time I was writing them.
I’m not exactly George R. R. Martin, but characters can and do die in my books (7 so far, if anyone’s counting. Is that a lot? I sort of feel like it is). Anyway, I point this out only to highlight that it’s not out of the realm of possibility for me to kill off someone. But sometime during the writing of Covet, Daniel’s death started to feel a bit gratuitous to me. Was I killing him in the name of emotional manipulation instead of what was best for the story? Also, I’m a big fan of characters having to answer for their actions, and if Daniel wasn’t in the picture there would really be no reason for Claire to ever tell Chris about her and Daniel’s relationship. Before I sent the manuscript to my beta readers and editor, I told them I had an alternate ending I wanted to discuss but that they should read the original first. If memory serves, it was pretty unanimous that killing off Daniel worked fine, but that not killing him worked better. One of my betas said, “You know what I kept thinking? That I wished there was someone for Daniel so that he could have his own happily-ever-after. Like maybe with Jessie.” We brainstormed a little and I mentioned the idea about Jessie still being listed as Daniel’s emergency contact. It all fell into place fairly quickly after that, and I re-wrote the ending. And in the back of my mind I knew the story wouldn’t be complete until I explored how this new ending would ultimate affect Daniel and Jessie.
I guess you’re all about to find out.
Please head over to my author page on Facebook for the opportunity to win signed copies of On the Island, Covet, Every Time I Think of You, and Cherish.