Writing update… For King and Country, book 2 of Battle Scars

Last week, three friends said they hadn’t seen my news about the post I did on English Historical Fiction Authors, or that I was interviewing a best-selling novelist. “I don’t have a Facebook account.” “I don’t see your posts in my Facebook Newsfeed.” Social media can be hit or miss, and I often think that there’s a lot more “miss” than “hit.” (If you really want to see me on Facebook (FB), turn on “notifications.”)  One good thing about FB is that I can post short updates that don’t always seem appropriate as blog posts, but if no one sees them, what good is that?!

This may be another “miss,” but I thought I’d do a round-up of items I’ve posted to FB in the last couple of week, particularly those providing a look at my progress on the sequel to Men of the Cross. I seem to have posted a number of snippets from the book there lately, so it feels right to share them here! Let’s go…


Sept. 21
102,833 words and counting…

Sept. 22
#1stdraft #ForKingandCountry

Robin called out, prayed for an answer. But none came. Every rustle in the bushes made him turn, hopeful to see his son.

“Where are you?” He called to the shadows darkening the woods.

Nothing. Not a sound. Even the trees had gone still.

The moon and stars laid claim to the sky, the light not a blessing but rather a curse. It illuminated empty spaces. The wind picked up and ushered in dark, rumbling clouds. With the villagers long gone to bed, Robin searched every place he’d already been. When the rain came, his voice rang out louder and stronger. Soaked from the downpour, he finally led Aggie to the stables. He searched there one last time, and then closed the door against the storm. Outside, he stared at the candle flickering in Marian’s window. He fell back against the wall, letting the rain mingle with his tears.

Sept. 27
It’s been a long, busy week. I haven’t been able to work on the novel as much as I would’ve liked. 800 new words this morning. Set the stage for another fight scene. Let the bodies begin to fall… 104,222 words and counting…

Sept. 28
Another 1100 words added to that fight scene. Have the basics down, though I have a character running loose who needs to bite the dust. Will flesh that out this week, but in the meantime, how about a harvest celebration: #ForKingandCountry #1stDraft

Drunk on passion, Henry staggered back toward the gathering. He grabbed William Carpenter’s ale and drank it down, did a spin with the man’s wife. Linota had to hold him up. She whacked his arse playfully. “You’ve enough ale for five men, Master Henry.”

“I know!” he said gleefully. “I should have another.” He reached for the goblet in her hands.

“I think not.” Linota swatted his hand away. She guided him past a table spread with roasted meat and pies. Henry grabbed two legs of chicken—Stephan might be hungry.

He heard his father call out. “Good to see you in such fine spirits.”

Henry tucked the meat into the crook of his elbow and spun Linota around one last time. At the door of the manor, he bowed, nearly tipping forward. “Thank you, dear lady.”

“Goodnight, Master Henry. Sleep well, ‘cause I fear you shall not feel so good come morning.”

Henry closed the door and leaned into it. His heart pounded wildly. He took one deep breath and then galloped up the stairs to find his lover.

Sept. 30
#firstdraft #ForKingandCountry 106,810 words and counting…

Tuck wrapped his arms round himself to ward off the chill. Sun and shadow played across the scowl on his companion’s grizzled face. Cold, tired, and an empty pouch. Not a good combination when a boss wanted to keep a man loyal. But fear…fear that any move might bring the wrong kind of attention? That would keep most men in line.

But Tuck was not most men…

Oct. 6
#firstdraft #ForKingandCountry 112,734 words and counting…

Robin held a thousand memories in his eyes. “You see their faces every time you draw your sword.”

Oct. 7
Feeling accomplished today:
1) #amediting and at 117,000 words – another 25K to get through on this round.
2) finished formatting a special blog post – watch for it on Thurs. or Friday.

Oct. 8
I usually sneak in an hour or two of writing in the mornings, but I slept in until 6:09 today. Rather than jump into editing mode while I waited to head to the doctor, I mulled over a scene I’d written months ago. I’d re-read it yesterday – it’s part of the chapter I’m editing now. I really like the scene, but realized I didn’t have a transition to explain how Little John ends up in a carriage with Queen Eleanor. Two cups of coffee. Visit to doc complete. Numb neck. Transition? Got it! #amediting

Oct. 11
Another chapter laid to rest. 121,002 words and counting… somehow the mss. has grown to 144K and I still have the last 23K to edit. Time for some hot tea, and then I will attack the next scene.

Oct. 12
King Richard is free! YAY! But, I still have to get him back to England. As I mentioned in a comment to Matthew below, this morning my edits include checking logistics, dates, and the whereabouts of certain historical figures to ensure I don’t take *too* much creative license.

That’s all for now. I hope you’ve enjoyed these peeks at For King and Country. Until next time… Have a good week!

>>Photos from the castle taken by me in 2010. CC BY-SA 4.0>>


  1. Elder Avatar

    I get them as emails.

    Sent from my iPad


    1. Char Avatar


  2. jadey36 Avatar

    Thanks for the snippets (I’m not on FB) and congratulations on an impressive word count.

    1. Char Avatar

      🙂 You were one person I was thinking specifically of when I mentioned the ‘not on FB.’ I hope you enjoy the snippets. Will you be up for beta testing, probably after the holidays.

      1. jadey36 Avatar

        Yes, barring any family crisis or the like, that should be fine.

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