Latest Novel More Than Moonlight And Roses

A week ago today I drafted the final sentence of Aliens Watch, seventh Other Worldly novel, and second-to-last in the series featuring Rowan Layne. It’s bittersweet because this one, other than the first novel Alienable Rights, took me longest to complete and was the most challenging. Partly because I dove all the way back into tough times in Alienable Rights to bring Rowan closure.

Hence, Aliens Watch is definitely not all moonlight and roses, with perhaps more tragedy than comedy, though it does have its funny, touching moments, as well as romance. Rowan even has a new suitor, bringing her up to a whopping nine dudes, mostly of alien heritage. Her sister is not at all surprised that his name begins with R. But what color are his eyes?

I bypassed that literary no-no about having too many character names starting with the same letter seven novels ago, so why stop now? At least I have some fun with it. I’ve been doing the O.W. and R.O. initials thing, as in Other Worldly and Red Orbiter, throughout. Why should book seven be any different?

And though that many love interests might be unusual for a 60-year-old woman, I’m cheering Rowan on. Because I’m older than her and, at this point, living vicariously through her adventures, including space travel and an unusual US road trip that has Rowan tripping down memory lane.

The emotional rollercoaster of writing this latest novel, which, like the others, features current sociopolitical events and issues and weaves an environmental conservation message throughout, was challenging and draining, but cathartic. It was also fun, as the others have been, to get imaginative with extraterrestrial edible produce.

There may not be roses in Aliens Watch, but there are interesting trees on Saturn aka Cultura. As well as bizarre, brightly colored creatures who consume their ginormous fruit.

In fact, all things great and large feature in this novel, including Bigfoot, California redwoods, and the Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus, having once starred its very own giant, the tallest man in the world due to the giantism gene.

And despite a dearth of moonlight along a lakeshore path in Minnesota, Aliens Watch of course features Earth’s moon, as well as Saturn’s biggest moon named Titan, which means—you guessed it— giant in ancient Roman. As does another of Saturn’s moons, named for a giant of Greek mythology, Enceladus. Rowan will travel to both, as well as one more of Saturn’s 146 moons.

The subject of humans and their overgrown, overblown gun obsession also features in Aliens Watch, and as I begin global drafting to reduce excessive word count and wordiness—because that’s a largess readers don’t need—I’m once again aware of current news events happening after I’ve already written them into my novel, or previous novels.

It’s downright uncanny that last year’s Altogether Alien includes a vile female politician who tries to shoot Rowan’s dog. It was so awful I almost couldn’t write it, but then again, in my novels justice and karma comes swifter than it does in life. The kraken is real, and Luna Moth Woman is on the job and up to the task, as long as she’s wearing her dayglow alien-green hiking boots.

Aliens Watch may not arrive in online bookstores until early 2025, but it’s finally on its way. Rowan Layne’s on her way somewhere, too, as the story ends, but that’s a big secret for now. Though I will tell you the opening scene take’s place on a gargantuanly long bridge spanning Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay, messing with Rowan’s vertigo and fear of heights bigtime.


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