Romance Writers Weekly: Writer’s Space

This week’s topic was chosen by S. C. Mitchell – Describe your perfect writing retreat.

If you came from the amazing Sarah Hegger’s site, welcome!

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Today is the release day for my romantic thriller “Untrue Colors.” The hideaway in my house is where I wrote most of “Untrue Colors.”UNTRUE COLORS 1600x2400

 

In a nutshell, I took over the sunroom in our house, and I refuse to give it back. Large windows on three sides provide perfect views of huge trees, squirrels, deer, and a few neighbors.

I started writing with a snack table and a large leather chair. It worked for a while. McDreamy, my husband, however changed everything by buying a small desk on wheels. I could keep a printed manuscript, a laptop, and a cup of coffee on it.

There was only one drawback to my setting, poor posture. Agonizing.

The solution? A lime green ball chair. I can sit on that for hours and not feel the muscle strain in my back I did when in the way too soft leather chair.

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Sometimes, I head to the kitchen and stand at the island to finish some tasks. I’m also closer to the coffee. I love the retreat. I’ve trained myself over the years to focus on work in the office, soI tend to be more productive here than anywhere else. My slice of Heaven on Earth.

Betty Bolte is the next stop on this trip around the web. If you’re lucky, maybe you’ll catch sight of one of her many pets. Dogs, cats, horses.

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Release Day secrets from “Flirting on Ice” (Shhh don’t tell Susan I’m talking about her!!)

The release of a new novella by Susan Scott Shelley and me is today! OMG. What started out as a lark, turned into a pretty cool novella. IMG_2631 Susan and I spent hours in my kitchen and hers plotting and revising “Flirting on Ice.” We’re damn proud of the result.

After all that time together, I’ve discovered a few things about Susan you may be interested to know.

Susan takes sports seriously. She’s crazy smart about players, stats, and rankings in both football and hockey. I can’t tell you the number of times she rewrote a few plays I created for our fictional hockey team the Atlantic City Hustlers. Thank God she did or the team would have been playing four quarters and skating over the end zone.

In addition to her sports expertise, she can make a heroine likeable, probably because she is likeable herself. While this may not seem like a feat to some people (and yes I’m talking to all you “nice” people out there), I tend to make my heroines unlikeable to the extreme (and no, I don’t think there is a parallel with me and unlikeable heroines. Do you?) Working with Susan, we created a heroine who is truly a person I’d want to hang out with.

The villain in the story is not evil to the core, but he is selfish and greedy. Just enough evil to make you root for the hero. I would have had him kill a few people and kick a puppy or two, but Susan was opposed to random violence in a romance. That’s not to say there’s no tension in the book, just less blood than I’d like.

 

In celebration of the release, we’re doing a Release Day Power Play. Whoever gets the most likes or tweets from their hockey social media posts will make a donation to Hockey Fights Cancer,and we encourage all of you to donate too. It’s a great cause.

http://www.nhl.com/hockeyfightscancer/donate-now.html

 

And we may publicly humiliate the loser too, although I hate being publically humiliated, so that part is optional!

Get Wicked With Entangled Blog Hop

 

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Welcome to this stop of the Entangled Wicked Blog Hop. Connect to the other blogs for more contests and great prizes by clicking on the logo above.

I’ve decided to wear a costume to this party. I’ve always loved black hair and Halloween is the perfect time to morph into someone new!

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I’m one of the newest authors at Entangled Publishing. Everyone from the publisher to the editors and the publicists have been so supportive. My book “Flirting on Ice” written with Susan Scott Shelley will be released in November. It’s a sexy novella about professional  hockey player who can’t away from the team owner’s daughter.

Mr. Perfect has found his kind of trouble…

Professional hockey player Zac Elliott is in top form. He’s having the best season of his career, the local fans can’t get enough of him, and he’s in the middle of the most successful contract negotiations of his career. When the sexy little spark between Zac and the team owner’s daughter blazes to life, no matter how forbidden, he can’t resist.

Philanthropist Heather Ryan can’t keep her hands off of Zac. If her father finds out, it could end Zac’s career and ruin her reputation. What they share is deeply passionate and intensely private…until the press exposes their illicit relationship.

Now the fans have viciously turned against Heather, Zac’s game is faltering, and even his team has deserted him. The only way out of the penalty box is for Zac to play hockey like life— and love—depends on it…

I can’t wait to reveal the cover.

Veronica Forand, Susan Scott Shelley, Tackled by the Girl Next Door

Veronica Forand, Susan Scott Shelley, Tackled by the Girl Next Door

In the meantime, Susan and I have published a fun football novella, “Tackled by the Girl Next Door.” Jason Black is a newly retired professional football player. Forced off the playing field due to an injury, he returns to his hometown to contemplate his future and finds solace in his relationship with his best friend, Samantha O’Brien.

Sam has spent the past five years caring for her younger brother. Home from college for Thanksgiving break, he parties hard and bullies his sister. When Jason comes to her defense, protecting her from a crowd of drunken college kids, Sam begins seeing him as more than a friend. Yet, she fears acting on their attraction could ruin the friendship she’s grown to depend upon.

Just one kiss changes everything for Jason. Sam is no longer the girl next door but the woman of his dreams. Now, he just has to convince her that his feelings are real. But when the football world comes calling again and career decisions are on the line, both sacrifice all to put the other’s needs first. They must decide whether to follow their hearts and make the catch of a lifetime.

 

I’m giving away a $10 gift certificate, a gift copy of “Tackled by the Girl Next Door,” and a gift copy of “Code Red” my romantic suspense short story. Good Luck!

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Romance Weekly #LoveWriteChat

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Do you like to read romance novels? Wouldn’t you like to know more about your favorite authors? Well you came to the right place! Join the writers of Romance Weekly as we go behind the scenes of our books and tell all….. About our writing of course! Every week we’ll answer questions and after you’ve enjoyed the blog on this site we’ll direct you to another. So come back often for a thrilling ride!

If you’ve come over from Elaine Jeremiah’s website, welcome. She’s the author of “Reunion of the Heart”.

 

We have Vicky Mason to thank for her questions today.

http://www.andilit.com/

http://www.andilit.com/

1.)   Was there a defining moment in your life when you knew you were going to become a writer? If so, what was it?

I’ve always jotted down stories in my head. Nothing great, nothing formal. A few years ago I decided to try NaNoWriMo. I lost. I made it to 35,000 words though and wanted nothing more than to finish the book. It took me two more years to finish it. When I was done, I had no idea what to do. Luckily, I found a local Romance Writers of America chapter nearby. The day I joined in February 2012, I became focused on making writing more than hobby. Since then, I’ve finished eight other manuscripts and sold seven of them.

 

2.)   When you write a story, do you see it unfold as one big picture, or do you add layering in subsequent drafts?

Even when I know the beginning, middle, and the end of a story, I always add subplots and additional layers into a story as I write. These are generally the best parts. The car that only starts after a push and shove, the chocolate that always remains on the heroine’s lip after eating a donut, or the hero’s fear of flying. Not plot points, but the icing on the cake!

 

3.)   How many drafts do you usually write before you send your work to your editor?

I edit as I write, so my work has already been edited about three times before I finish a manuscript. I then print it out and edit it another time. Finally, I read it out loud to make sure everything flows.

My critique partners then pick it apart it. I send it to my agent after I have a solid draft. Then my editor sees it.

 

Hop on over to Raine Balkeras blog to see a bit of her writing history and techniques.

 

Romance Weekly: Writers Write…

Do you like to read romance novels? Wouldn’t you like to know more about your favorite authors? Well, you came to the right place! Join the writers of Romance Weekly as we go behind the scenes of our books and tell all…… About our writing of course! Every Tuesday we’ll all answer the same questions and after you’ve enjoyed the blog on this site, we’ll direct you to another. So come back often for a thrilling ride. Tell your friends and feel free to ask us questions in the comment box.

Have you come from Romance Writer Kim Handysides’ blog? http://kimhandysides.com Great. If not, jump back after reading this.

This week’s cool questions come from Jo Richardson.

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  1. How often do you write?

Most days, but not everyday. I write as long as I can when no one is at the house with breaks for Facebook and walks to clear my head. At least two hours of writing are done each day wile I’m sitting in the car waiting for my daughters at their activities. With no Internet access and complete silence, it’s one of the best places to concentrate.

  1. Do you think it’s important to your craft to write as much as you can, and as often as you can?

Yes and no. No one can improve in writing skills if they don’t actually write. And over time, I feel like I’ve improved some basic skills in writing like sentence structure, avoiding passive sentences, showing v. telling, etc. The more I write, the more my writing is closer to where I want it to be on the first draft.

Writing alone, however, doesn’t make a good story. I’ve read stories where it feels as though the person rushed through to finish, but never connected to the characters. A quick first draft is great, but if the time is never put in to solidify the plot and flesh out the characters, then the story can fall flat. There needs to be time to think and plot and come up with creative ideas. I’ve taken days to play with plots and make sure that everything is interesting throughout the story. Many of those days, I don’t add any new words to the story.

I’ve tried to write super fast, but I’m so picky about word choice that it’s nearly impossible to write straight through a scene without pausing to use a thesaurus or Google a location or flight schedule or other random fact. My pace is also slower than most people because I hate leaving a sentence unfinished. If a word isn’t right, I obsess over it until I find the perfect way to phrase my thoughts. One sentence can take ten minutes if I’m struggling with it.

  1. What is your opinion on the saying “if you don’t write every day, you’re not a writer”?

If a person writes, he or she is a writer. Writers may only be able to write on weekends, on vacation, or maybe every Thursday afternoon when the kids are at soccer practice. That said, practice is important in any craft. And if a person wants to be successful, he should improve his chances by writing more.

Write because you love it, practice because you want to improve, and work hard because you have goals.

unleadedwriting.com

unleadedwriting.com

 

You’re now in for a treat, Ronnie Allen is the next stop.http://ronnieallennovel.com/gemini/blog-1 Her book “Gemini” will be published soon. Psych’ meets ‘House.’ An assertive, sometimes aggressive screw the protocol psychiatrist who happens to be psychic & clairvoyant, uncovers and then tracks a female psychopathic predatory murderer.

 

A few things before you go!

Congrats to Kim Handysides! She just sent out her debut contemporary romance, titled “Stolen Kiss” to the editors this week! Be sure to keep your eyes out for this one!

And Leslie Hachtel just signed a contract for “Captain’s Captive” with Black Opal books! Congrats!

Gemma Brocato’s first two books in the Five Senses Series are on sale for a limited time on Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Cooking-Up-Love-Five-Senses-ebook/dp/B00IRITMS8/ref=pd_sim_kstore_1?ie=UTF8&refRID=1KR1B4QZPJJT4AS3YEZ2 

Susan Peterson Wisenwski’s book, “Chasing the Rainbow” is on sale on Kindle through 7/18/14 so grab your copy for only $.99cents!

http://www.amazon.com/Chasing-Rainbow-Susan-Peterson-Wisnewski-ebook/dp/B00KRC56Y6/

And don’t forget to join us for the Multi-Author six month anniversary party on facebook! Lots of prices to be won… including a Kindle!!

Here is the link to join us!
https://www.facebook.com/events/773431862675366/