Monday, September 28, 2009

The Thrill and Horror of Being in the Newspaper

When Karina Bland, a reporter at our daily paper, called me for an interview about how romance book sales are up in a down economy, I was thrilled...and horrified.

Thrilled because it's an honor to be quoted or written about and the chance to advance the cause of reading romance is important to me.

Horrified because I'm going to be quoted and written about in the NEWSPAPER!!
Where people will READ my WORDS and FORM OPINIONS about me. That can't possibly be good, can it?

See, I am an introvert with extrovert tendencies, which is agony, believe me. I love talking and meeting people and saying outrageous things and making people laugh and gasp, but then I'm mortified afterward.
Why did I say that? What was I thinking? I looked like an idiot or a fool or whatever. Weird, huh?
How do you feel about public speaking, cocktail party chatter, karaoke, and, oh, getting hypnotized to squawk like a chicken?

If you're curious how the story came out, here it is in her online column, where it was reprinted from the Sunday Arizona Republic: The cover of the book she mentions is here. It's still available online, by the way. The book offers a last hit of summer when the fall is upon us!
Dawn, who is now working on a Christmas book...jingle, jingle...

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Love the Book You're With

I recently sent the book I've been working on to my beta readers for their feedback.

The book's working title is A HOME FOR CHRISTMAS and it's my first SuperRomance. It's set in a small, family-owned mall and it brings up all the joys and agonies of the holiday season--the traditions, the traumas, the surprises and disappointments, the lost loves reunited.
I loved that story as I wrote it. It was like a member of my family. And now I would be handing it over to strangers. (Well, not strangers, wise readers, but you know what I mean)

They'll look over my book with care, noting the good features, the broad shoulders, the kind eyes, the sensible attitudes, and they'll seek out his flaws and weaknesses--his muddy motivation, his unresolved conflict, his clunky dialogue. That is the point, after all.

The idea is painful to me as I stand in the post office with the red-white-and-blue Priority envelopes holding the pages still warm from the printer. What if they don't like it? I'll just die.

Luckily, time passes, during which my readers read and guess what I do?

I go to work on another book! Forgetting entirely about the story I loved so much. And guess what, I adore this one, too. Each morning I can't wait to take the characters a few pages farther on their life-changing journey.

That will all change next week when, armed with the critiques from my readers, I must set aside the shiny new book and fix up the book I so lovingly mailed away. Time to fix those flaws, spiff up those scenes, sharpen that dialogue, go for those missed moments.

Luckily, I'll fall right back in love again (cheating on the new book, of course), eager to spiff up my tattered beloved, smooth all the rough edges and soothe all the boo-boos before sending it to my editor for a last loving chance to make it better.

Then back to the new guy with, I hope, renewed love. And the entire process starts over.

It's a rollercoaster ride, all right, but then I've always loved a wild ride....

Here's hoping readers enjoy the results.

All my Best,