Monday, March 24, 2014

The "My Writing Process" blog tour continues!

       When I was asked to participate in the “My Writing Process” blog tour, I got excited! I love doing this kind of thing. Right now, up front, I need to say a big “thank you” to my fellow MCRW member Jeanne Hardt for inviting me. See Jeanne’s entry on the “My Writing Process” blog tour from last Monday, March 17, right here. She was invited by Jody Wallace, yet another member of that same Romance Writers of America chapter. You can see Jody’s entry here. Just look for the March 10 entry. (She also did a “Bad Lib” entry for my newest book, Adventurous Me, and it’s pretty darn funny.)
          Now, let’s get to it, shall we? Here we go with the questions.

What am I currently working on?
         Let’s see . . . Adventurous Me releases on April 1. Renovating a Heart, the third novel in the Love Under Construction series, releases on May 19. I have another of the Harper’s Cove novellas underway. The fourth Love Under Construction series novel, Planning an Addition, is well underway also and due out this fall. I have a new series I’ll be starting sometime this summer (actually, the first book has been started). There are more Harper’s Cove books already in the planning. There are two independent novels that I’m developing. And it was just decided that there will be a mini-series spun off of the Love Under Construction series; it’ll be called the Citadel series (for Steve’s security business). So I have plenty to keep me busy!

How does my work differ from others in its genre?
         One of the main differences is the ages of the characters. Most of my main characters are well over forty; some are even close to sixty. I got tired of all of the so-called “sexual experts” in some of the well-known erotica and erotic romance novels. I wanted characters who were more realistic and easy to relate to. And unlike most of the authors in my genres, I’m comfortable writing from most any point of view. I like to mix it up!

Why do I write what I do?
         Why not? I love it! It’s too much fun. I like to tell people that I’m the only person I know who gets to use purchases at the local adult store as tax deductions! And it’s true – research can be costly. But seriously, I love the complexity of the scenes when sex is added in, all of the emotion and gut-level sensation involved. I like the creativity of the Dominants. I like the inner turmoil off the submissives and the Dominants. I just love it all. Anything else would seem boring to me now.

How does my writing process work?
         You might want to sit up and pay attention here. By the end of July, I will have published nine books in a year. That’s a lot. So my writing process is a pretty significant piece of who I am as a writer.
         I typically start with an idea of some sort. The Celtic Fan was started from the idea of an author who wrote a bestselling book, but whose identity was unknown. Adventurous Me came from the very first scene in the book, when Trish’s husband announces that he’s leaving her and she starts throwing things. The new series I’ll be working on this summer is named after a story in the christian bible and a popular 60s sitcom (you’ll understand when you hear about it). But I pay attention when those ideas flit across my brain.
         Then I try my best to get some notes down really fast before I forget what’s filtered through my mind. That’s crucial. It’s usually a brief overview of the primary points of the plot.
         Once that’s done, I start writing. I don’t always write scenes in order. That means that as I go along, very often things have to be moved around, added to, or changed to make everything fit. It also means that sometimes scenes just don’t make the cut. I work, refine, work, refine, work, refine, until I have everything where it needs to be.
         Then I employ a timeline in the form of calendar pages I print out from my computer. I go back through the book and enter all of the main events on the calendar pages to make sure what I’ve written is actually plausible and correctly ordered. If so, great; if not, changes need to be made. I make them and roll on.
         But the most important aspect of my writing process is simply this: I never, never, sit down and wonder, “So . . . what am I going to write today?” Never. I always have at least a half-dozen things going and a really good idea exactly where they’re going, so I sit down and actually write. I’ve been known to write 11,000 words in one day. I wrote over 130K words during NaNoWriMo. I sat down in a writing sprint in late February and wrote 2,215 words in 15 minutes. Not sloppy. I mean that literally: They were not sloppy. They were well-organized, with spelling, grammar, and punctuation intact, and more than usable. They were the beginning for the newest Harper’s Cove novella, and I had to change one word – one word – when I went back to it. Not bad for 15 minutes, huh?

         Next week, I’ll be followed by Missy Lyons, an author friend of mine who actually got me interested in western-themed erotic romance. Be sure to go to her blog and check out her entry and her work here.
          Missy Lyons has been writing from childhood, and is now a mom who still enjoys spinning a good tale. She was first published by Phaze Books in 2007 with the short story, Closing the Deal. Since then, she has written several novels and many more short stories. She is always coming up with new ideas to write about, and hopes she chooses subjects that will be emotionally moving to her readers. Living in Nashville with her family and a menagerie of animals, she has had many jobs over her lifetime, from an executive manager to freelance writing and graphic design, but her first love as a writer will always be her favorite career choice.  She loves to hear from fellow authors and readers alike.


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