Monday, March 3, 2014

My Writing Journey...So Far!!!

...The very talented Melissa Keir asked me to participate in a blog hop to explain my writing process. I mentioned I'd decided to take up writing in this post but then I left you all hanging and never said anything else. This post will tell you all about my writing far!

1) What am I working on? I'm currently working on my first novella Love is a Fire. It's the first story in a series so it's short and moves quickly. Summary: Dr. Katy Malone has sworn off love but when firefighter Nick Garrity comes into her ER, she may have to give love another chance. Their hearts are quickly set a fire by each other's love for one another. Has Katy overcome her fear of love or will she be burned again?

If you've been following my blog for awhile then you shouldn't be shocked that one of the main characters is a firefighter. As I began writing, I fell in love with Katy and Nick which is why I decided to do a whole series because I couldn't leave them after just one book. I've had some readers say that Nick is too perfect and I'd probably agree. I mean, if I'm creating a dream guy, why would I give him any flaws???

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre? Since I've "joined" the world of writing, I have learned so much...and I still have SO MUCH to learn. Did you know that romance novels are required to have a happily ever after or happy for now ending? Apparently, if you don't, then readers revolt and leave not nice comments for you. Yikes-that's scary even as I type it!

I have spoke with other authors who have suggested my work is women's fiction, which to me, makes me think of a women's movement which it TOTALLY is not. I guess my story is a mix of romance, women's fiction, and chick-lit. I have also had comments that some parts are not believable to which my response is: it's fiction! It doesn't have to be believable. I mean how many people would want to read the story of how Matt and I met in line for a Port-a-Potty? Yeah, not many.

3) Why do I write what I do? Honestly, I've watched one too many episodes of Grey's Anatomy and Rescue Me. When I was reading Divas Never Flinch, one of the characters decided to write a screenplay. This was the second or third indie author I'd read and when that was mentioned, I decided I'd try my hand at it.

As I write, I try to remember what I like/dislike as a reader. I wasn't a fan of reading three pages to describe how the yard in front of the mansion looked nor did I like when a relationship was dragged out the entire book only for the main characters to inevitably get together in the last chapter and then "the end". I want to know what life was like when they finally hooked up! Was it really happily ever after? And if that was the whole point of the book then who cared what the yard looked like.

4) How does my writing process work? When I started Love is a Fire, I had no writing process. I just wrote until I was finished. I've already started on another story, but this time, I created an outline, month by month listing the major events I wanted to happen in each chapter. It was much easier this way.

After I finished the story, I place it chapter by chapter on Critique Circle. The first time I did this, it was very intimidating. I mean, you're putting yourself out there and ASKING for people to critique you...the good, the bad, and the ugly. Most of the authors on this site have way more experience than me and some ask questions/mention things that I have no idea what they're talking about. However, most of the critiques are very useful and they all call me out on my head hopping which I'm notorious for. Some weeks, I get lots of critiques and other weeks I'll be lucky to get two or three. I keep with it though because even one good critique is better than none at all.

I've also had a few friends read it (thank you Cece and Jo!) and I've swapped with a couple authors as well. One totally burned me, I read and critiqued her story only for her to tell me, sorry, I don't have time to do yours. Punk! The other author is working out very well though. I'm slowly making connections and getting more help/feedback which will only improve me as a writer. Some days, I'll read my story and think this is awesome and other days, I'll look at it and think it's only mediocre. But like anything else, the more I work at it, the better I'll become.

Now for what I'll do with my writing...well, I want to publish it. Not that I plan on quitting my job or think that I'll become rich from book sales, but I figure, I've worked hard on my story, I love my characters so why not share them with others. While I would love to work with a literary agent or publishing house, the few I've contacted haven't been interested and as busy and impatient as I am, I will probably end up going the self-publishing route which means money out of my pocket for formatting, book cover, etc...and that doesn't even cover any promotions or marketing if I really want to sell the book. The way I look at it though is that Matt spends money on hunting, I spend money on running so this is another hobby but hopefully, I'll earn a little return on it.

If you're an author who would like to swamp critiques, please leave me your contact info. If you're interested in helping me out by being a beta reader or participating in a virtual book tour once it's I've published, or know someone who is, please also contact me.

My readers have always been supportive throughout all of the journeys in my life so I'd really appreciate it again during this new, exciting time.

A shout out to Denny for the awesome book cover he created for me. Be sure to check out the new "page" on the top of my blog.


Liz said...

This is so cool!

Julie said...

You know I love to read, I'd love to be a part of your beta group, tour group, whatever! Just let me know details :)

Rachelle Ayala said...

What a fun adventure! I do love your perfect heroes! I just worry they're too perfect, like what are they hiding, you know? But that's the mystery/suspense side of me.


Joanna said...

Love the book cover! I was honored to read your book :) I can't wait to read the finished product & the rest of the series!

Melissa Keir said...

Congrats on your endeavors. I love that you are taking the approach to share your story and not get rich quick. :) It's totally an uphill battle, even while carrying a boulder. But I wouldn't trade it for a thing.

I have some contacts if you want them. I even know a few people ;)

Thank you for writing about your writing and best of luck!