Sunday, February 24, 2013

Weekly Writing Check-In: And the band keeps marching on

Yet another week of ups and downs! (Are we shocked? Nope!) On one hand, I saw the highest sales day of my writing career yet on Friday! Any not just on one channel! Europe! Asia! CANADA! Amazon! B&N! Are! Smashwords! FREAKIN' KOBO! (Big deal because I've had ONE sale on Kobo since October. One!) About half of those sales have been from my erotica pen name. Who knew porn moved copies? I know. Breaking ground here.

On the other, things that are completely beyond my control are festering again. People are sick and surprise!bills are popping up. That's life. But it would be nice if for just ONCE I had a little control over it!

I'm in major editing mode again. This weekend alone I've done edits on an erotica piece, the next RR short, AND the next RR novel! (Which I should be working on right now.) Can you believe it's almost March already? I don't know if I'm happy or upset that this year is going by so fast. Guess that's what happens when you do nothing but work and all the days bleed together.

Hope everyone out there is having, at the least, a decent week!

Friday, February 22, 2013

"HATSUKOI." Giveaway Going on at Goodreads!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

"Hatsukoi." by Hildred Billings


by Hildred Billings

Giveaway ends March 20, 2013.

See the giveaway details at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Enter for your chance to win! One autographed copy will be going out at the end of March!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Deleted Scene from "SEIKOU."!

It's not unusual for me to cut entire scenes from my manuscripts before they make it to publication. Most of the time I have no desire to share them, and I'm pretty  sure you have no reason to read them. But I'm particularly fond of these full scene that got cut from SEIKOU, the latest novel in the REN'AI RENSAI series. In it Reina gets "sick mother" duty, and, as usual, hashes it out with her mother-in-law Junko, who has a fever and isn't holding back the hate.

I originally wrote it to connect to one of the final scenes. However, editor told me it wasn't necessary, and I agreed pretty quickly. Thus, it got hacked. But not before making it through most of the final edits.

It's probably not too spoilery if you haven't read SEIKOU yet. Hope you enjoy!


            She awoke to streams of sunlight coming through her bedroom window. At first she stirred from a coma brought on by pain killers and strong tea, but as soon as she saw it hanging above her, pillow in hand and hovering above her face, she let out a hair shearing scream.
            “Shut up, banshee.” Reina finished fluffing up her mother-in-law’s pillow and tossed it onto the other side of the bed. “What? Did you think I was going to kill you?”
            Junko huddled beneath her comforter, her bloodshot eyes boring a tube of venom into Reina’s psyche. “Demon!” She flung a hand into the air and smacked it against the wall – a calligraphy print shook from the force. “Demon, be gone from my room!”
            “Oh, I’ve graduated to demon now, how lovely!” Reina slunk into a wicker chair beside the sliding glass door. She tossed a leg over the other and leaned against an arm.
            “I don’t know who let you into my room, she-male, but – ”
            “Mother!” Aiko came to the rescue, her chest winded from running up the stairs. “What’s going on in here? Did I hear you screaming?”
            Reina shrugged while her mother-in-law continued to hyperventilate as if someone really had been trying to kill her. You’re not so lucky today. Reina was fairly certain that was illegal, and the ire she would receive from Aiko alone also deterred her.
            “Ai-chaaaan!” Junko extended her arms like a baby reaching for her mother, an eerie role swapping. “My dear Ai-chan, somebody let this she-male into my bedroom, and she tried to kill me! Suffocate me with my own pillow!”
            Aiko looked between her mother and her spouse, disbelief clouding her already harried face. Eventually she focused on Reina, who struggled to maintain her composure.
            “I didn’t try to kill her,” she mumbled. “I was being nice and fluffing her pillow for her when she woke up and started screaming.”
            “She lies! Don’t let her trick you, Ai-chan! She has the devil inside her!”
            One silent groan later and Aiko reached her verdict. “Come on, Reina. I need help downstairs.”   
            Great. Punishment. But it beat babysitting the mother-in-law from Homophobia Land.
            Reina followed Aiko out of the room. They went downstairs, where a vacuum cleaner loitered in the hall and dusting materials littered both the Japanese style room and the living area. Yes, punishment in the form of house cleaning. Still better than that asshole.
            “Sit down, I’ll get some water.” Aiko disappeared into the kitchen.
            Reina hovered between the hallway and the living area. What was Aiko up to? Either Reina was in time out or about to get another scolding. How was it her fault that Junko was evil incarnate and one of the nastiest people she ever met? Reina slumped down at the table for the first time in twenty years – the first time had been when she first visited the Takeuchi house under the pretense of “just a friend” and was grilled about her family life. Junko’s most excellent advice back then was for Reina to quit her job and get married.
            Since then, Junko remained an obstacle to Aiko’s happiness, a truth Reina had no idea how to fix. For five years their relationship was a secret to Aiko’s family. In those years, Reina had been treated with courtesy and admitted to dinners and small parties. After they moved in together, however, Junko stumbled upon them in a heated embrace, and the panic and derision continued from that day on. Reina didn’t know which was worse: lying and hiding, or coming out and being hated.
            Aiko swore the latter was easier to bear. As she returned with two glasses of water, Reina imagined a life in which her wife couldn’t tell everyone and anyone how in love she was. That’s how she had always been. Even her name, “Child of Love,” loaned itself to Aiko’s big heart and deep naiveté.
            “I want to go home,” Reina said after her wife sat down next to her. “Don’t make me put up with her any longer.”
            “I’m sorry about all of this. You think I enjoy hearing what she calls you to your face?” Aiko put a hand on Reina’s back.
            That touch offered only a blip of reassurance. “Well, it’s never going to get any better. Just let me go home.”
            “I wish I could.” The hand rubbed up and down Reina’s sore muscles. “But I need you to help me move some of the furniture around. Then you can go home.”
            Great. Was this supposed to help her image around Junko? Not that Reina was sure she cared about her “image” anymore in the Takeuchi house. What was there to salvage? Her pride? She agreed with a small huff to do Aiko’s bidding. The only reason she caved in and came that day, on a rare corporate holiday, was because Aiko begged her to in a small fit of panic. Early that morning she received a phone call from Saki, distressed that she couldn’t go to their mother who had apparently relapsed with a fever. Reina smelled deceit kilometers away. Turned out, Junko only had a minor fever, but her brain was still fried.
            “It’ll be fine,” Aiko said, and patted Reina’s knee. “I know you two don’t get along…”
            “Wow, that’s an understatement.”
            “…But you have to remember she’s from another time when…women weren’t supposed to be doing what we do.”
            Reina didn’t know how she was supposed to swallow that stream of bullshit. “What are you talking about? Lesbians have been around for as long as two women have ever been near each other. And yeah, that goes for Japan, too.” Reina had met her fellow Japanese women in utter denial that it happened within their own borders. “It’s fashionable to be gay in the West.” She would hear that phrase until the day she died. “It’s not our fault if your mother chooses to cover her ears and spout vitriol because she’s bitter her daughter didn’t marry some rich guy!” Reina was over the name-calling. She had been called shit since the day Junko saw them tonguing in their living room.
            Anata,” Aiko said softly, her voice carrying the one pet-name between them like a bandage, “I love you. Remind yourself that. And maybe stay away from her if you can help.”
            No amount of “love” could shoulder the burden of putting up with Junko’s hate. Reina knew that, and she suspected Aiko knew it as well. Such were their fates, however, in a world punishing them for following their hearts. And no matter how much Reina reminded herself that she was “loved,” it didn’t cover the fact she was also hated, not only because of her sex, but because of the sex she wasn’t, either.
            Sometimes Reina felt the most exposed as a woman around Junko Takeuchi.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Weekly Writing Check-In: Conventions and More!

The biggest news of the week is, of course, The South Coast Writers Conference I attended yesterday in Gold Beach yesterday. In years past I have written up a blow-by-blow account of the sessions I attended and what I thought overall. This year, not only do I not have the energy or time to do so, but I'm not sure what the point would be. As usual, the conference was great. I had some good fun, talked to some people (I know right! I got out of the house!!!) and overall had a pleasant day doing my writerly thing. It was rather odd talking about my series REN'AI RENSAI out loud, though. Simply because I have never said those words out loud before! Amazing, isn't it? But yes, if you live in the Oregon south coast area, I highly recommend going next year if you have the chance!

Otherwise, things are much the same. My pen name series is doing its job and pulling in most of my income this month! The second book is coming out, oh, tomorrow, so I'm hoping that will really help things take off?

Now I pose a question to you. Have you ever been to a writer's conference? What did you get out of it? Would you go again?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Special Ren'Ai Rensai Valentine's!

(Hey! It's still V-day here!)

I had a reader request I make some Valentine's out of Ren'Ai Rensai characters. (You may have seen some faux Valentine's making their way around Facebook and Tumblr.) So I thought, why not? I'll get to bust out some new poses for my Sims 3 game!

In total I made about four. If you're a fan of the series, please go ahead and take a look! One of them is kinda NSFW tho coughcoughcough. Hope everyone had a nice V-day!


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

FREE TODAY! "Mitsushin." a REN'AI RENSAI short!

***FREE ON FEB. 13th, 14th, and 15th!!!**** VALENTINE’S DAY PROMO!

For their first Valentine’s Day together, Aiko hopes her girlfriend Reina will finally woo her with a little romance. Instead their big date veers off in a strange direction when Reina decides it’s time to initiate Aiko into the wondrous world of “Mitsushin,” or “three hearts” as their foreign friend calls it. Will this inclusion of a third woman obliterate all the romance left, or will Aiko discover a new way to celebrate the love she has for Reina? A relationship legacy that will ripple throughout all of Shinjuku is about to be born.

“Mitsushin.” takes place on February 14th, 1993


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Weekly Writing Check-In: New Pen Name Launch This Week!

Been running in circles all this week as I prepare for my pen name launch, oh, tomorrow! I won't be posting the name of my pen name here at any time. So, if you are interested in raunchy lesbian shorts, please drop me a line somewhere and I'll hook you  up with my pen name's social media so you can follow whichever. New releases will be announced on all of them.

Well, I guess now I don't have to say what my pen name is going to focus on...

That's not the only thing happening this week. This upcoming Saturday is the South Coast Writers Conference. Thanks to my wonderful readers who helped pitch in on Friday, I have been able to order paperbacks in time for the conference! I'm looking forward to a great time and will be sure to write up a report!

Now, back to work! I've got a lot of writing / editing / formatting to do still!

Friday, February 8, 2013

AVAILABLE NOW: Buy your own unique REN'AI RENSAI scene!

Tired of me not getting to your two faves/OTP fast enough? Really annoyed that some characters aren't getting any? Never fear! There is now the option to purchase your own unique REN'AI RENSAI scene.

For every $10 I will write you a one page (12pt font, TNR, single spaced with default margins - scenes may go over a page a little) scene between any two female characters of your choosing. This will be your own scene to keep either to yourself or to freely share (so long as credit is given.).

Currently funds are going to the purchasing of paperback copies of DAISUKI and HATSUKOI. I am looking to raise about $50 in the next 24 hours. A few readers told me to put up a paypal link for them to donate to, but I feel all sorts of BLARGH just taking people's money without giving anything back. This will probably become a regular option in the long run, but for now it's to help me raise money for a conference next weekend.

A few notes if you decide to purchase:
  1. Only two characters. Must be female, and no Junko. (Sorry no hawt Junko x Nakamura action for you.) The checkout page will prompt you for your selection. (If you can't remember somebody's name, try the character's page.)
  2. PLEASE don't forget your email address so I know where to send the finished product!
  3. I will get your scene out to you as soon as possible, but depending on how many orders I get it could take up to a week.
  4. In the "notes to seller" please tell me anything you DO or DON'T want to see in your scene. I will not do dubcon/incest/beastiality/scat/water sports so don't worry about that.
  5. That said, if you DON'T want sex at all, please let me know and you will get a dokidoki romance scene without the sex.
  6. Non-canon couples are welcome. These scenes will not be considered canon.
  7. Paypal only.
If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to ask!

Choice Characters:

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

New! The official REN'AI RENSAI interactive website!

Yup, brand new site JUST for REN'AI RENSAI, which will let me clean this site up a little. It's an interactive site, meaning readers are free to leave comments on posts and pages and to submit their own goodies! There's even a match making quiz that will match you up to your perfect lesbian! (D'aw.) Plus extensive information on books, characters, and the setting! Seriously go check it out! :D

I've been working on it since around New Year's, whenever I found the time between writing, editing, and life in general. So happy to have it finally finished!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

"HATSUKOI." now available in Paperback for only $9.99!

After some oops and ohohohos and more oops from Createspace, the HATSUKOI Paperback is finally ready for purchase! I received the final proof today, and although CS goofed the spine a little (more on this later) it has been approved for public consumption. You can get your copy here!

I do have a bit of a gripe with CS lately, though. Up until last week, all my proofs (aside from goofs on this end) came out near flawless. It was rather mind blowing. Starting last  week, however, I've been getting books with the spines way off center. I know that each printing has its own variance, but this is getting annoying. I've already had one buyer contact me politely pointing out that her copy had an off-centered spine and I had to explain that was CS printing and she had a stroke of bad luck. I ended up offering to replace it for her but she declined, citing it was fine. BUT STILL. Sigh. I'm ordering batches of both DAISUKI And HATSUKOI to take to the writers' conference next week and they better be aligned. Blargh.


Sunday, February 3, 2013


(No, I am not getting married, before the OMFG U STR8 NOW? comments start flooding in~) This week is a rather silly, ironic week. Mainly that this is the week I will officially attempt to reenter the work force in order to pay my monthly loan bills for this degree I just had to have, (That's gotten me super far in life. Mm-hmm. Lost generations, and all that.) I have to do this because, while I'm not making chump change at self-publishing, it's still not enough, and I'm almost all out of savings. I could make thousands of dollars overnight but wouldn't be able to pay bills next month because of the way Amazon delays payments. BUT today I DID wake up to find more sales in the past three days than I ever made in one month last year. Amazon has been nice to me today. Not only did it finally set ROUMAN to perma-free, but it also finally linked up the DAISUKI paperback and kindle versions. Yay! Still, this is Amazon. I don't expect it to last long.

This will also be the week I launch a new (lesbian erotica) pen name, focusing on short and to the point works as opposed to my plot and character driven heavy erotic romances I write under my real name. More on that later as I get closer to the release date of the first work. I still have some tax stuff to talk over with my trust tax lady.

Tomorrow, or possibly Tuesday, I will be unveiling the SUPER SECRET PROJECT I've been working on since December. Ren'Ai Rensai fans should get a huge kick out of it. But that's all I'll say about that for now!

Now excuse me, I have a resume to go brush up.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

CREATIVE SURGE plus ANXIETY equals "Wait, what is productivity?"

About once a month this happens to me: I suddenly get overwhelmed with creative ideas, particularly if I'm starting a new project, and my brain runs away from me before my body (typing fingers) can keep up. This then leads to serious anxiety (especially if I'm on a time limit or money is an issue) that basically leads me to running in a giant circles going LKSDFKLAFKLAKLDA and not getting a single thing done.


This is happening to me tonight. It began around 6pm when I was facing the obstacles of my new pen name rolling out in a couple weeks. Next thing I knew, it was 10pm and almost NOTHING had gotten done. Once again: woo.

I always come to the same conclusion: Hildred, sleep on it. Odds are things will be clearer in the morning (or you know late afternoon for me.)

Am I the only one with this productivity canceling issue? What do you do when anxiety is colliding with the creative process?