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Emotion Belongs Somewhere Else Besides in Your Manuscript: An Exercise

By on Saturday, Dec 17, 2011 | 3 comments

Take a look at the following words:doomedshatteredunforgettablecoldlydevastatingattractionferociousoverwhelming pleasureperilmistrust desireincipient hopepainfulnewWhat do you notice about there words?  Most are adjectives.  Some are nouns.  One is an adverb.Okay, go deeper--what do you feel about these words?  Does reading down the list make your heart beat a little faster?  Does it cause you to imagine something, well--exciting?  Does [...]

High Concept Tree

By on Wednesday, Nov 23, 2011 | 0 comments

I have never (until now) seen a pine tree that changes colors and LOSES its needles.  A deciduous pine?!!!  Even scarier, I saw it and thought, this tree is EXACTLY the kind of thing we strive for as writers of fiction.  That unique twist on the usual that is so compelling it makes you immediately turn [...]

Want to write for Mills and Boon? Read This!

By on Friday, Nov 4, 2011 | 0 comments

A few weeks ago I told you the Mills and Boon first chapter competition topped out at 1090 entries.  Well, today they announced the winner, Natalie Charles, for her story The Seven Day Target.  Check out her story here For the rest of us who didn't final:  the Mills and Boon editors selected 20 random first [...]

Slaying the Dragon–Every Day

By on Friday, Oct 21, 2011 | 2 comments

Every day, the same fear seizes me.  I sit at my keyboard, hands poised, and I freeze.  And that horrible, whining voice starts in."What if you're not clever enough?" (or funny enough, smart enough, entertaining enough, just fill in the blank) it says, mocking me.  "Do you actually think you can put words into coherent sentences?  You [...]

Mills and Boon Competition Tops Out at Over 1,000 Entries

By on Monday, Oct 10, 2011 | 0 comments

The Mills and Boon New Voices Competition just closed today with 1,090 entries.  Wow.  Read the amazing first chapters of as many as you like in six different categories at  http://www.romanceisnotdead.com/Entries/Open-to-AllAnd of course you can check out my entry, A Bride for the Bachelor, where a workaholic New York editor and a carefree reality show star spar over a [...]

Rubies Discuss GH Tips

By on Thursday, Oct 6, 2011 | 0 comments

Well, my first page was not one of the 4 finalists on the Ruby Sisters blog last week but if you haven't already, go and read the wonderfully creative ones that did final.  This little contest underscored the importance of the first line and the first page of your manuscript.  From now till October 13th, the Rubies [...]

Fun with the Rubies Today

By on Tuesday, Sep 27, 2011 | 0 comments

Are you polishing up your manuscript for the RWA's Golden Heart contest?  Pop on over to The Ruby Slippered Sisterhood today to check out the finalists in their First Line contest.  The Rubies (who are the 2009 Golden Heart winners) took 100 first-line entries and voted to choose 11 favorites.  Those 11 will submit the first [...]

The Book You Wait For

By on Monday, Sep 19, 2011 | 0 comments

I knew it was going to be one of those books.  The kind that keep you from doing anything you're supposed to be doing, the kind that makes you stay up too late and feel terrible the next day.  The kind where you cannot STAND not to turn the page, over and over again.  And [...]

The Quirky Things Writers Do

By on Monday, Aug 1, 2011 | 3 comments

A few days ago, I finished the first draft of a novel I began writing in April under the tutelage of Lori Wilde in her Novel in Six Months Class at SavvyAuthors.  It came in at around 77,000 words.  Now mentally exhausted and physically drained, I took the entire weekend off to reboot my weary self.  Four romantic [...]

Keeping the Reader in the Story–Advice from Susan Elizabeth Phillips at RWA 2011

By on Thursday, Jul 14, 2011 | 0 comments

[Today I thought I'd share with you an article I wrote for the July issue of my local chapter newsletter.]  [Wasn't Nationals fun?!]Susan Elizabeth Phillips, bestselling author of contemporary romance, gave a talk to a packed room at RWA Nationals on “Writing the Bestseller:  Six Magic Words.”  She was highly entertaining and hilarious and packed a [...]