Romance Includes You, The Writing Life

Medicals Romance Includes You recap

It was such a pleasure to see how many people participated in the Medicals Romance Includes You pitch session, and the variety of plots was impressive! As an author who joined the medicals family through So You Think You Can Write, I know how nerve-wracking pitching must have been. Congratulations to everyone who put themselves out there, and even if you didn’t get that ‘thumbs up’ from one of the editors, please don’t give up.

We all have stories to tell, and you can be sure there are people in the world who want to hear them.

I want to hear them.

Just prior to the pitch session, a lady contacted me through my website and asked for my opinion on her pitch. I was extremely flattered, because this profession can be an extremely isolated one, where I write and write and never know if what I’m putting out is really liked. I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t really think about it much anymore (and I rarely, if ever, read reviews) but it is nice to hear from the occasional reader.

Giving her a few pointers took just a few minutes of my time, and I wished her all the best, hoping she’d attract the editors’ attention, because I’d like to see how she handled her plot.

So, that’s my next point to all those hopeful authors out there.

Don’t let anyone’s opinion make you think you’re laboring in vain, even if it feels that way.

If this is something you really want to do, keep trying. Bad writing, if done frequently, can lead to good writing, as you keep learning and find your voice.

On a slightly less upbeat note, I saw a few pitches that had me thinking that perhaps that particular person hadn’t read any Harlequin/Mills & Boon medicals. There were plots points and situations I’d think many more times than twice about pitching to my editor. High drama is wonderful, but there are ways to take that to extremes and risk turning off the readers.

So, if you’re determined to break into the Medicals line, read the books. That’s really the only way to figure out what the editors are looking for. While preferred plots, characters, etc. change, the tone of the line remains fairly constant.

There were also a few pitches with typos, and missing punctuation. Now, let’s all be honest, typos happen to EVERYBODY. Yet, if ever there was a time to get obsessive about what you’ve written, it’s when trying to attract an editor or agent’s attention. Typos will get you attention—of the wrong sort!

But the bottom line really is, congratulations to everyone who pitched, because it takes guts to do! To those who got the nod, all I can say is, “Get writing! We’re all waiting…”

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Inspiration

I can’t believe that my 20th book released this month. It’s surreal sometimes that I get to do this amazing thing and write books. It’s something that I’ve always wanted to do.

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I often talk about my inspirations for becoming a writer and one of my biggest supporters was my Mom.

MeandMyMom
Yeah, I’m the one crying in the white floaty thing. The lake was kind of murky and I didn’t like it one bit.

I lost my Mom this past June to cancer. She was 64 and she loved Harlequin books. In particular Presents and Historical. Though, she did love reading Medicals when I gave her mine. She was biased and I didn’t mind. 🙂

She would’ve been so proud of me hitting book #20 and I know she is, but it’s been a hard few months.

My 20th was written before I lost her and my 21st was as well. Actually, my 21st book which comes out in January 2019 was accepted two days before she died. My editor emailed me to tell me that the book was accepted and I had to email Sareeta back and tell her I was sitting at my Mom’s bedside saying good-bye. Everyone at Romance Towers was so accommodating and understanding.

There are some books that are difficult to write for whatever reason. Number 20, NY Doc Under the Northern Lights, was one of those books that was easier to write in retrospect. Book #23, which just was accepted, was my most difficult.

It was the first book I wrote after my Mom died. And I was pretty numb writing that first draft, but then I heard my Mom’s voice and things got better.

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My Mom WAY before two kids caused her grey hairs. ❤

And when 20 released, I really struggled with being happy about it because she wasn’t there physically. In my heart she is.

I’m still grieving. This past Friday it’s only 4 months since I lost my rock. The one person I would always turn to when I was anxious or worried. She was my shelter in a storm and it’s been hard not picking up the phone or going to see her and tell her good news.

It’s been hard. So hard, which is why I’ve been somewhat quiet on social media and on here. It’s getting better though. 🙂

And as I tried to focus on my release and writing/revising book #23 The Surgeon’s Convenient Husband, she was there in her own way.

I know that she’ll be there in every book I write.

Like she’s been there since I drafted my first short story at the age of 9. I wouldn’t be where I am today without her. So thanks for that, Mom.

I love you.