Beckett, the moment before.

Leveling: Season One: Episodes 1-7 by H.D. Knightley

Character: Beckett Stanford. Army. 22 years old.

I volunteered. I had signed up to sling sandbags against the always encroaching water, biding my time for the end of my six years of duty, when I heard the Government of the Unified Mainland wanted someone to man an Outpost, to sit out in the middle of the godforsaken ocean and warn the Nomads to head east. The water is coming. Go east fast. And me, stupid as always, volunteered without planning to, without thinking, without considering the implications. I hate the water. Every climbing, sucking, deep ass bit of it.

But now I’m here. The rooftop of a building that used to soar into the sky at some 120 floors, and now looks to be two stories, floating on top, but not, not floating at all, instead: Still Standing. Despite the water, the rust, the structural impossiblities, the currents, and storms: Still Standing—but for how long? The water is coming, this building could collapse from under me. Any day.


So I wait. I wait for Nomad families to paddle up and ask for food. I read the edict and tell them to head east, or else. I wait for my duties to be over, for the helicopter to come and pull me off, finally. But really, I’m waiting for that moment when the water will be one drop too many and with a creak, a crumble and a roar, the whole building will slide away and disappear carrying me with it. That’s what happens when a stupid, not thinking person volunteers.


To bide my time I watch the marks carved onto the port window of the 118th floor. I try to check them once a day but can’t stop checking them all the time, climbing down through the stairwell and noting that the water keeps getting deeper. Deeper and deeper unrelenting and always the same.


Until today. I was checking the marks, worrying about deepnesses, not paying attention to the empty endless terrifying horizon, when a young woman on a paddleboard, soft-paddling in a lazy circle, alone, a few feet away, asked, “Where’s Sam?”


And startled me so much I just about lost my footing.


But that’s the thing about finding someone in the middle of the endless ocean, it could be a near disaster with a splash, but it also might be a beginning; if the water doesn’t collapse us first.

Read the Book Now

Leveling (a novella) is in your Kindle today!


I camped in a beautiful place this week, Refugio State Beach, CA. I took this photo, the ocean is carving away at unstable cliffs, causing stately Palms to topple and moms to beg, “Please, don’t go under there.”

Some days it seems everywhere you look you find instability and a cause for fear, we live in these days. We wake up to the records we’re breaking—temperature, population, rage. We go to sleep to the whispers of our fears—it’s hotter, it’s crowded, it’s all on the point of collapse. And how do we carry on? Yet we do.

We jump on the cliffs with our loved ones and we build cabanas in the sand and play a song we wrote around the fire and these things are what’s good, where our focus should be. Not in fear but in fun. Not in trauma but in joy. We stop being cynical and instead embrace our possibilities.

That’s what Leveling is about, two people colliding at the tip top of a building with the water rising all around. Their fears are escalating, but also, love. Because we are still ‘we‘ when it comes down to the end of the day. Our children still sing and play and invent games like Full Contact Werewolf and laugh with abandon while rolling in the sand. And two people surrounded by water might fall in love. They might discover hope at the edge of a rising sea. They might actually set the events in motion that change everything for the better. They might. We can only hope.

Leveling is for sale here:leveling better finish orange font half submerged

Leveling, only .99

If you bought it during the preorder period, guess what? It’s in your kindle right now. I hope you enjoy. And please let me know what you think. I’m working on the second installment right now.


Free e-books for Memorial Day Weekend!

Three to be exact.  On May 27th 12:00 am EST to 11:59 pm EST. Free. Download them now and read them over your holiday.

Bright bestBright, Book One of The Estelle Series. If you haven’t read it yet, what’s taking you so long? If you have, now would be a good time to gift a copy to a friend, the e-book is FREE May 27th. 24 hours only.

BeyondBeyond; Book Two of The Estelle Series, will also be FREE. So pick one up and refresh your memory for when Belief; Book Three of the Estelle Series comes out June 24th. (It would be awesome if you’d pre-order it now, too!)Belief-best-cover-smallest


My romance, Violet’s Mountain,  will also be FREE tomorrow, because what better to do than read about hot sexy surfer boys this summer break?

leveling better finish orange font half submergedAnd if you want more hotness, preorder my new novella, Leveling,  It’s a romantic sexy story in only 20,000 words. Not for kids


Belief (Book Three of the Estelle Series) and Leveling (a novella) are ready to be pre-ordered!

Pre-ordering helps me, because all the sales for the entire pre-ordering time period load onto Amazon on the same day. Might I be catapulted into best-seller land? We can only wait and see. And pre-order ;o)

Belief-best-cover-smallestThe third book of the Estelle Series, Belief, can be pre-ordered here:

3 book series

One of my beta-readers said this: “I’ve read everything you’ve written so far and this is my favorite.”

leveling better finish orange font half submergedMy new novella, Leveling, can be pre-ordered here:

Leveling A Novella

It’s a romantic sexy story in only 20,000 pages. Not for kids.